UK car production is continuing to show sharp growth on year-ago levels, with car production in April up 44% year-on-year.

In the month of April car production reached 98,290 units.

In the first four months of the year car output reached 414,357, some 64.9% ahead of the same period last year.

Output for both home and export markets has increased, with home production more than doubling, accounting for 28.3% of output during the first quarter.

There was also a welcome uptick for commercial vehicles. Commercial vehicle output rose 40.8% to just over 10,777 in April; UK engine production was up 38.2% to 199,568 units.

“Output in April is up across the car, commercial vehicle and engine sectors compared to the same time last year, reflecting a good start to the second quarter of 2010,” said SMMT chief executive, Paul Everitt. 

“A number of UK product launches and the introduction of new technologies are helping to sustain demand despite an expected slowdown following the end of the scrappage scheme. The home market saw a significant increase in the month, a positive indication of a strengthening economy and an improvement in consumer confidence.”

Analysts warn that the UK car market could weaken in the coming months as the boost provided by the scrappage scheme disappears – and that would dampen down production, alongside weaker export demand from continental Europe.

New car registrations in the UK rose 11.5% in April to 148,793, the tenth successive monthly increase.

The SMMT recently raised its forecast for the UK car market in 2010 to 1.924m units following the strong start to the year.