Motor industry Sustainability Report launched

19 November 2003 #SMMT News
  • CO2 emissions from new cars down 8.2 per cent since 1997
  • Vehicle manufacturing recovers, climbing eight per cent
  • UK share of global car production begins to rise

  • The latest data on the state of Britain’s motor industry has just been launched. Measuring social, environmental and financial performance, the fourth annual Sustainability Report contains good news on all fronts.

    Tailpipe emissions have fallen for the sixth successive year. Average CO2 emissions from new cars in 2002 were down 8.2 per cent on 1997 figures and 1.9 per cent on 2001 levels. And, as manufacturers develop ever-cleaner petrol and diesel engines, the report also reveals that around 40 per cent of car models on the market meet the tough Euro 4 emissions standard – a full two years before it comes into effect.

    Vehicle production climbed for the first time in the report’s history as did the UK’s share of global car production. Car and CV registrations continue to rise reflecting economic strength, strong consumer spending and increased investment by UK businesses. Total manufacturing turnover for the sector also rose by 1.9 per cent year-on-year.

    Staff turnover also fell for the third successive year to an average of seven per cent, down from 7.6 per cent in 2001 and 10 per cent in 2000.

    Commenting on the report’s findings, SMMT chief executive Christopher Macgowan said, ‘The latest sustainability report clearly shows the motor industry’s commitment to improving the environmental performance of its products, and the tremendous progress that has been made in reducing CO2 emissions. It is particularly encouraging to see these environmental gains alongside growth in production and registrations. The success of recent plant restructuring programmes and resulting growth in global share and exports show the competitiveness of the UK as a global base for automotive manufacturing.’


    Notes to Editors:

    1. The first annual Sustainability Strategy was launched by the SMMT in March 2000 with 11 major signatories. The fourth report includes 24 signatories.
    2. A full copy of the report and guidelines can be viewed at


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