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British car makers see best monthly manufacturing since 2000

Thursday 27 April 2017, By Autovolo

British car makers see best monthly manufacturing since 2000

British car makers see best monthly manufacturing since 2000

Car production in Britain has seen its best month in 17 years.

Over 170,691 cars were built in March, an increase of 7.3 per cent compared with the same month in 2016, when 159,074 cars were made. Exports are a major factor with the number of vehicles shipped overseas increasing by 10 per cent.

Car production has also seen its best first quarter in 17 years, with year-to-date figures up 7.6 per cent to 471,695. Exports were again the main driving force with an increase of 11.5 per cent compared with the same period in 2016.

Manufacturing for the British market was down 2.2 per cent for March and 4.3 per cent for the year so far.

Mike Hawes, chief executive for the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, said: “UK car manufacturing is accelerating thanks to billions of pounds of investment committed over the past few years.

“A large proportion are the latest low-emission diesels and it’s essential for future growth and employment that we encourage these newer, cleaner diesels onto UK roads and avoid penalising consumers who choose diesel for its fuel efficiency and lower CO2 emissions.

“Much of our output goes to Europe and it’s vital we maintain free trade between the UK and the EU or we risk destroying this success story.”

Key players within the industry warned that any trade restrictions put in place as part of Brexit could potentially be harmful to the UK car industry.

Last week, Oly Richmond, CEO of online servicing provider Servicing Stop, warned that losing free trade “will put an end to cheap services and affordable repairs”.

A report commissioned by Servicing Stop warns that manufacturers with large operations in Europe could be forced to move jobs to the continent to reduce costs.