Car production up in October

UK car production returned to growth in October, rising 7.4% to 69,524 units.

According to the latest figures published by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), production rose for both home and overseas markets, up 12.5% and 6.3% respectively.

However, October’s performance was still 48.4% down on 2019’s total and 52.8% below the five-year pre-pandemic average for the month.

Meanwhile, production of battery electric (BEV), plug-in hybrid (PHEV) and hybrid (HEV) vehicles rose again, with combined volumes up 20.3% to 24,115 units. In the year to date, UK car factories have produced a record 61,339 BEVs, up 16.2% on the same period in 2021.

Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said: “A return to growth for UK car production in October is welcome – though output is still down significantly on pre-Covid levels amid turbulent component supply. Getting the sector back on track in 2023 is a priority, given the jobs, exports and economic contribution the automotive industry sustains. UK car makers are doing all they can to ramp up production of the latest electrified vehicles, and help deliver net-zero, but more favourable conditions for investment are needed and needed urgently – especially in affordable and sustainable energy and availability of talent – as part of a supportive framework for automotive manufacturing.”