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UK car manufacturing quietens over summer but remains up YtD

The figures show that August output fell 22.1%, with some manufacturers taking additional holiday shutdown.

However, a total of 994,949 cars have been manufactured in the UK so far in 2014 – up 1.0% on January-August 2013 – with the SMMT adding that UK car production is set for a bright future, with significant investments being realised and new models starting assembly.

‘The month of August – typically the quietest of the year – saw a 22.1% drop in car production over 2013 as the 2014 calendar meant some key plants took additional shutdown compared to last year,’ said Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive. ‘Volumes are still strong for the year-to-date, however, with the UK automotive sector in the midst of a renaissance. Global demand for quality UK-built products is at an unprecedented level, with significant investments into UK production facilities from government and industry currently being realised.’

Meanwhile John Leech, KPMG’s UK head of automotive, reiterated that the UK car production has never had a brighter future, saying: ‘UK car manufacturers, most notably Nissan, have taken the opportunity to schedule essential plant maintenance during the traditionally quiet month of August. This is just a blip and we expect strong growth in UK car production in the final quarter of this year powered by new launches of the 5-door MINI and Jaguar XE, both of which I expect to be successes. The new Jaguar XE ‘s specifications look to be particularly competitive compared with its principal rivals and it will be interesting to see if the consumer responds. This underlines the strength of the UK’s model line-up at present – the Nissan Qashqai, Juke, BMW MINI, Jaguar and Range Rover cars are all widely recognised as class leading.

‘There is no doubt that UK car production has never had a brighter future than it does today. We remain confident of UK car production growing by over 20% to an all-time record of 2 million vehicles in 2017.’

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.