Manufacturing revival continues through August

UK car manufacturing output rose for the fourth consecutive month in August, up 34% to 49,901 units.

According to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), the performance was still 45.9% below August 2019’s pre-pandemic level of 92,158 units.

Production of battery electric (BEV), plug-in hybrid (PHEV) and hybrid (HEV) vehicles also grew. Almost a third (32.2%) of all cars made in Britain in August were one of these models, equivalent to 16,059 units. Output of BEVs alone more than doubled, rising 115.9% to account for almost one in 10 cars produced.

Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said, “While another month of rising UK car production is good news, and testament to sectoral efforts to overcome supply chain shortages, it overshadows what is an extremely tough and uncertain environment for manufacturers. Volumes are down dramatically and firms are having to take drastic steps to safeguard their businesses in the face of myriad challenges.

“The government’s measures announced last week to alleviate crippling energy costs provide valuable respite, but long-term action is needed to restore stability and provide the sector with a globally competitive investment framework. Reform of business rates, enhanced capital allowances, an affordable and secure supply of low carbon energy, and investment in new skills can enable this critical sector to deliver the economic growth, productivity improvements, balance of trade benefits and job security the UK sorely needs.”