Industry Topics


UK car production achieved a 17-year high in 2016. 1,722,698 vehicles rolled off production lines last year from some 15 manufacturers, an 8.5% uplift on total production in 2015 – and the highest output since 1999.

A record number of cars 1,354,216 – representing 78.8% of total production – was for export in 2016. Growth was strong across a number of markets, notably the US – the UK’s biggest export destination after the EU – where demand rose by almost half (47.2%) meaning it now accounts for around 14.5% of all UK car exports. Notable uplifts were also seen in Turkey, Japan and Canada whilst China, third on the list of export markets, grew by a more modest 3.1% with 88,610 vehicles exported last year.

New investment to support growth

The automotive industry is truly global and attracting inward investment to the UK remains a high priority for industry and government.

Development of a suitably skilled and flexible workforce is a top priority achieved through investment in training and apprenticeship schemes.


Each year, the Budget includes specific taxation measures for the motorist. In 2001, government changed the vehicle taxation system aligning it to tailpipe CO2 emissions. This was further modified in 2009 as the limits between bands were tightened.