The UK motor manufacturing industry had an excellent month in February, recording a 13.1% increase in output year on year, as supply chain shortages look finally to be easing.
8,050 additional cars rolled off production lines compared to the same month in 2022, according to new figures published by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).
Output for home (20.3%) and export (11.5%) markets both saw double digit increases, and shipments to the EU rose 6.5%. 39.3% of cars produced during the month were hybrid, plug-in hybrid and battery electric vehicles.
These promising statistics mark an upturn for car production, after a period in which the industry has been badly affected by supply shortages, long lead times and rising production costs.
“February’s growth in UK car production signposts an industry on the road to recovery”, said Mike Hawes, chief executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders. “The fundamentals of the sector are strong; a highly skilled workforce, engineering excellence, a sector that is embracing new electrified vehicle manufacturing and wide ranging capabilities in the EV supply chain.
“To take advantage of global opportunities, however, we must scale up at pace and make the UK the most attractive destination for automotive investment by addressing trading and fiscal costs and delivering low carbon, affordable energy.”
2022 saw car production in the UK at its lowest level for 66 years, so this is perhaps a sign that the motor industry is finally turning the corner from a two-year downturn.