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CV output falls in April but exports keep driving demand in 2017

25 May 2017 #CV Sector #SMMT News #TNB News #UK Manufacturing
  • British CV manufacturing falls 28.3% in April 2017 as the late Easter bank holiday affects production.
  • Year-to-date figures also decline, down 8.1% compared with 2016.
  • Exports continue to account for the majority of production in 2017, up 12.6%.

British commercial vehicle (CV) manufacturing declined in April 2017 as the late Easter bank holiday resulted in fewer working days for UK plants, according to figures published today by SMMT.

6,132 vans, trucks, buses and coaches were built in Britain last month – a 28.3% drop on the same period in 2016 following very high levels of demand over the past two years and fleet purchasing cycles affecting the timing of monthly production volumes.

Year-to-date export figures remain strong, up 12.6% on 2016 and bolstered by a significant boost to the European market.1 The proportion of CVs built for overseas markets reached 64.5% for the first four months of the year, and at 19,087 units, was 12.6% higher than the same period in 2016 and the highest level since 2010.2

Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said,

With fewer working days in April and following two years of exceptionally strong demand, it’s not surprising to see a decline in CV output, especially when you consider the effect of fleet buying cycles on manufacturing timing. However, as the proportion built for export reaches levels not seen since the start of this decade, it highlights the importance of maintaining good links with our biggest trading partner, Europe. Securing a strong trading relationship will be vital to the continued success of UK CV manufacturing.


1 ACEA figures show a 3.8% rise in European CV registrations for January – April 2017.

2 In the year-to-date 2010 70.2% of production was for export.

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