Year-to-date volumes rose 0.4 per cent despite a slow August which adversely affected total output. Export production led the rise in both year-to-date and month on month output rising 18.3 and 7.2 per cent respectively.
Commenting on the new car output data, SMMT chief executive Christopher Macgowan said, “The increasing strength of the export market, driving UK production, is compensating for the slow down in home output. This clearly demonstrates growing worldwide confidence in the UK as a competitive base to build new cars. Production is now set on a firm upward trend that is likely to continue through 2004.”
In contrast, September CV production fell by 13.7 per cent month on month to 17,107 units, on a par with September 2001 production, and year-to-date output at 136,123 units was down 2.3 per cent on the same period in 2002
Year-to-date growth of over eight per cent in home production failed to offset the dip in export production. “Year-to-date output was only 2.3 per cent shy of last year's level after September's CV production fell short of the impressive 2002 rate. UK manufacturers are making solid ground from the buoyant home market despite the constraints of a weak export market. Full year output should remain close to 190,000 units,” said SMMT chief executive Christopher Macgowan.