SMMT News UK Manufacturing

Commercial vehicle production falls in May

27 June 2024 #SMMT News #UK Manufacturing
  • UK commercial vehicle (CV) manufacturing declines -59.3% to 4,400 units in May.
  • Output for domestic and export markets falls -52.2% and -61.9% respectively, but exports remain up in the year to date.
  • Overall year to date volumes dip by -3.2% to 45,439 units, a fall equivalent to 1,492 units.

UK commercial vehicle (CV) manufacturing fell for the third consecutive month in May, by -59.3%, as temporary supply chain challenges impacted output, according to the latest figures published today by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). 4,400 vans, trucks, taxis, buses and coaches rolled out of factory gates, with the decline set against a particularly strong May last year – the best performance since 2008 – as manufacturers worked to clear pent up demand post Covid.1

Shipments to overseas markets represented two-thirds (68.8%) of all vehicles produced in the month, although volumes declined by -61.9% to 3,027 units. Continuing the long-term trend, the EU was responsible for the bulk (95.9%) of exports. Meanwhile, 1,373 units were produced for the domestic market, a fall of -52.2%.

May’s decline means UK CV production is now down in the year to date by -3.2% to 45,439 units – equivalent to a loss of 1,492 units. Demand for British-built vehicles by overseas markets remains strong, with year-to-date exports up by 5.9% to 31,688 units and seven in 10 (69.7%) commercial vehicles produced shipped aboard. Manufacturing for UK customers, however, declined by -19.1% to 13,751 units – a figure expected to recover as output stabilises throughout the year.

Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said,

Commercial vehicle production has gone from strength to strength over the last year, driven by increasing demand at home and abroad. The recent downturn is obviously disappointing, but is temporary and, as supply chain disruptions are resolved, output should be back on track. With the general election now just a week away, the next government must ensure we have the conditions necessary for growth which means maintaining favourable market conditions, improving the competitiveness of UK manufacturing and ensuring trade flows are as free and fair as possible.

Notes to editors

1 May 2023: 10,817 units

Filter News

Update Newsletter