SMMT News UK Manufacturing

UK CV manufacturing grows by a quarter in November

21 December 2018 #SMMT News #UK Manufacturing
  • UK commercial vehicle manufacturing rises 26.5% in November, with 7,983 vehicles rolling off production lines.
  • Demand in home market doubles, as large domestic orders follow negative growth in 2016 and 2017.
  • Year-to-date performance stable, up 5.0% on the same period last year, an increase of 3,697 units.


UK commercial vehicle production increased 26.5% in November, according to figures released today by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). While the low volumes associated with CV manufacturing can result in large percentage swings, the doubling in output for the home market helped manufacturing jump by a quarter.

Although the number of CVs built for overseas customers fell -9.4% in the month, production for the UK market more than compensated, rising by 2,070 units. The increase follows large fleet orders from British businesses and unusually weak performances over the same period in 2016 and 2017.

Year-to-date production figures remain broadly stable, increasing 5.0% on 2017, with manufacturing for the domestic market up 11.8%, and export demand up 0.8%, accounting for almost 60% of total output.

Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said,

While the boost to commercial vehicle production for the home market is certainly welcome news, it is important to remember that large fleet orders can have a big impact on this small volume sector. The very significant increase follows weak performances in the previous two Novembers and small volumes at the beginning of the year.

Despite the growth in domestic demand, exports continue to take the majority of output overall so any weakening in global markets will be a worry. Maintaining the success of the sector depends on the UK remaining competitive and that means ensuring the preservation of the beneficial trading conditions we currently enjoy.

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