Car manufacturing ‘performing well’ according to SMMT figures

Figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) show that car output rose for the 13th consecutive month, up 22.2 per cent in July and 15.1 per cent for the year to date.

Published today, the organisation’s monthly output figures show that commercial vehicle output stabilised, down 1.3 per cent in the month with a 7.7 per cent fall for the first seven months.

Engine production was up 0.3 per cent over the year, with a 1.9 per cent downturn in the month.

In a statement, Paul Everitt, SMMT chief executive, said: ‘Car manufacturing continued to perform well, with output up more than 22 per cent for the month and 15 per cent for the year to date.

‘While uncertainty in Europe remains a challenge, the £6bn investment committed to the UK in the last two years delivers long-term growth opportunities and the latest figures show that our products have enormous global appeal.’

Responding to today’s figures, Philippa Oldham, head of manufacturing at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, said: ‘While some industries such as car and aerospace manufacturing are bucking the trend and seeing strong growth, recent figures show that UK manufacturing as a whole is still shrinking.

‘The success of UK car manufacturing should motivate the government to take urgent action to support manufacturing so that we can see other industries become UK success stories.

‘Government needs to work with industry and other political parties to develop a detailed manufacturing and industrial strategy with cross-party support. Industry needs this certainty and also needs greater access to capital investment in order to invest in new production plants, machinery and training.’