SMMT News UK Manufacturing

Independent report sets out state of the nation

02 July 2009 #SMMT News #UK Manufacturing

An independent report into the UK motor industry written by sector expert and professor of automotive management at the University of Buckingham, Peter Cooke has been launched online at today, 2 July 2009.


Commissioned by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), the Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI) and the Retail Motor Industry Federation (RMI), the detailed report looks into each area of the UK industry from car and commercial vehicle manufacturing to the value and location of the supply chain and the importance of continued investment in research and development as well as retail, distribution, finance and the environment.


The report has been written for a broad readership and as a basis for debate regarding the future of the UK motor industry. Investigating both the history of the sector and the current challenges it faces, the report aims to highlight actions needed to retain and enhance the role of the UK against global competition suggesting how it can build on its strengths for the 21st century.


Commenting on the report, SMMT chief executive Paul Everitt said: “The motor industry, both in the UK and around the world is experiencing one of the biggest challenges in its history but despite these difficulties, it is important for us to take this opportunity to ensure the UK sector is fully equipped to benefit from future growth in new markets. This report confirms the need to prioritise investment in new technologies to place the UK at the heart of the low carbon agenda and the importance of working, with the support of government, to build on our strengths as a globally competitive and highly productive manufacturing base.”


The full report and an executive summary are available to download free of charge from the industry reports section of the SMMT website at


At €20 bn, the automotive sector is Europe’s largest investor in R&D, driving industry forward and helping deliver more sustainable motoring for the 21st century. Technological innovation has helped car and CV manufacturers slash CO2 and air quality emissions from vehicles. New diesel cars for example emit 95% less soot from the tailpipe than those made 15 years ago and average new car CO2 has been cut by 19% since 1997. The energy needed to produce each vehicle is down 12%, water use is down 9% and waste to landfill is down 25%, compared to 2006 performance.  CO2 emissions per vehicle produced have fallen 14% in the last year and by 45% since 1999. Almost 10,000 tonnes of waste have been prevented from entering landfill sites. For more details, download SMMT’s ninth annual Sustainability Report from the SMMT website


Why is the automotive sector important to the UK economy?

·          27 car and CV manufacturers operating in the U producing 1.7 million vehicles

·          £51b turnover and £9.5 billion value added

·          Over 800,000 UK jobs

·          UK automotive manufacturing supplies over 100 markets worldwide, offering some resilience to UK issues

·          New cars emit less CO2 than older models – average new car CO2 emissions have fallen 19% in the last decade


For more information on the UK motor industry, visit or


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