UK car manufacturing achieves all-time record exports in 2012

  • UK car manufacturing broke all-time export records in 2012, with volumes sent overseas exceeding 1.2 million, up 8% on last year.
  • Total vehicle output increased 8% last year to 1.58 million units, the highest level since 2008.
  • Car output rose 9% in 2012 to 1.46 million units, ending the year with a 6% rise in December.

Paul Everitt, SMMT Chief Executive said, “2012 was a very good year for UK car production with record levels of exports and volumes at their highest since 2008.

“The outlook for 2013 remains positive with demand in many faster growing global markets offsetting the continued weakness in European economies. The £6 billion of investment committed to UK facilities, new model programmes and R&D signals a bright future and many new opportunities for companies in the supply chain.  These remain extremely challenging times and it is essential industry and government continue to work together to secure long-term industrial growth.”

UK automotive manufacturing data

Business Secretary Vince Cable said, “News that UK car production increased by 9% in 2012 and exports are at record levels is a great tribute to our manufacturing strengths, particularly in the face of challenging trading conditions in Europe and strong international competition.

“The UK is achieving success by making products that are in demand across the world. We have a diverse and innovative automotive sector with some of the most productive plants in the world and a flexible, skilled and committed workforce.

“The government is creating a highly supportive business environment to ensure that UK manufacturers continue to flourish as well as encouraging further investment in the UK automotive sector, including the supply chain.

“There is no room for complacency and to build on this competitive advantage we are working jointly with the auto sector on a long term industrial strategy.”

CV and Engine manufacturing facts

  • CV output fell 6.8% in the year and was down 18.9% in December.
  • UK engine production remained stable, down just 0.3% in 2012, with December dipping 0.8%.
  • CV and engine manufacturing output last year reflects weak demand in European economies as instability in the eurozone and fresh austerity measures impact on consumer confidence.
  • The outlook for UK automotive manufacturing is good with global demand remaining strong and UK facilities building on the significant investment committed to them in recent years.

Click through to download the full UK automotive manufacturing news release for December 2012 (full year data).

If you use these figures in online editorial, please reference www.smmt.co.uk/data as the source.

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