UK car output remains buoyant

Figures released today by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) showed that UK car output rose 16.6 per cent in April 2013, reversing the decline experienced during the first quarter of 2013.

Manufacturing output for April reached 110,033 with 22,278 units destined for the UK market and 87,755 marked for export.

Commercial vehicle output fell 3.3 per cent in April to 8,623 units but UK engine output rose 9.9 per cent to 211,452 units.

Commenting on today’s output figures, John Leech, UK head of automotive at KPMG said, ‘With new cars sales stabilising in Germany and Spain and still powering ahead in the UK, the mood in the UK car industry is brightening.  

‘UK car production looks set to grow again in 2013, which will make it the fourth consecutive year of growth contrasting sharply with the rest of Europe which is expecting its seventh straight year of decline.’

‘Compared to Europe, the UK has a higher proportion of premium car plants such as JLR and Mini which export to fast-growing emerging markets and whose consumers have been more confident over the past year.

‘Our medium-term forecast remains positive, with UK vehicle production set to grow from about 1.5 million to 1.9 million in 2016 based on manufacturers’ latest plans.’

Across the EU, the number of new passenger car registrations grew in April for the first time since September 2011.

A total of 1,038,343 units were recorded in April 2013, or 1.7 per cent more compared to April 2012. Four months into the year, new car registrations amounted to 4,026,946 units, or 7.1 per cent less than in the same period a year ago.

Results varied across markets: Germany (+3.8 per cent) and Spain (+10.8 per cent) expanded, while France (-5.3 per cent) and Italy (-10.8 per cent) faced a downturn.