SMMT data shows that UK car production was stable in January at just 0.7% down on the same period of last year, in spite of a sharp fall to the European car market so far this year.

February's slight dip was against a high base in February of last year (February 2012's output was 26% up on the previous year). Over the first two months of the year, car production stood at 266,507 units, 0.2% ahead of the same period last year.

The data also shows that production for export was down almost 10% on last year, with output for the domestic market strongly up.

Mike Baunton, SMMT Interim Chief Executive said, "Following the outstanding rise a year ago, it's pleasing to see car production continuing to maintain those robust manufacturing levels." 

John Leech, KPMG’s UK Head of Auto, also saw the UK car output figures as a positive.

"Given that vehicle demand in the Eurozone countries has fallen by about 10 percent in recent months the dip of 0.7 percent in UK production last month comes as a relief and underlines the resilience of UK vehicle producers.

“This resilience is borne from the fact our car manufacturers such as JLR are increasingly exporting to emerging markets and are selling models in high-growth niche segments of the market such as Nissan's Qashqai and Juke.  

“The medium-term outlook remains bright for UK car production with JLR, Nissan and BMW all expecting to increase UK production in the next few years notwithstanding the expected continued weakness in the Eurozone.”

Car manufacturing February 12 February 13 % Change YTD-12 YTD-13 % Change
Total 138483 137458 -0.70% 266033 266507 0.20%
Home 25228 35251 39.70% 46588 62162 33.40%
Export 113255 102207 -9.80% 219445 204345 -6.90%