CV manufacturing declines

UK commercial vehicle (CV) manufacturing declined moderately in August, according to figures published by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).

3,685 vans, trucks, buses and coaches were built in Britain last month, a -1.6 per cent fall year on year, representing 59 fewer vehicles. Production for the UK declined -3.4 per cent in the month, while export demand fell by just four units.

In the year-to-date, commercial vehicle manufacturing is down -2.9 per cent, impacted by a -12.7% drop in production for the home market, where business uncertainty and fluctuating buying cycles have influenced demand.

Overall, output continues to be driven by exports, up 3.1 per cent compared with the first eight months of 2017. More than 52,000 CVs have been built in Britain so far this year, with 65.9% destined for overseas customers.

Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said, ‘August is typically a low-volume month for CV production so drawing conclusions from snapshot comparisons is not advised, especially considering the impact large fleet orders can have. With fluctuating buying cycles and business uncertainty continuing to affect the UK market, today’s figures once again underline our reliance on international trade – particularly with the EU. Therefore, it is imperative we maintain our beneficial trading arrangements with the EU and other key markets.’