Car production in the UK continued its strong start to 2016 with 13.1% year on year growth to 146,955 units in February. Export production increased 9.1% to 104,880, with output for UK market up 24.4% to 42,075. Year to date total output was up 10.6% to 284,507 cars.

SMMT chief executive Mike Hawes said: “The UK automotive industry’s impressive growth continued into February, with demand from both domestic and overseas customers showing no signs of slowing. The outlook for the sector is bright, but much will depend on global political and economic conditions in the months and years to come.”

John Leech, UK head of automotive at KPMG, said: “UK car production grew strongly by 13.1% in February due to new models such as the Vauxhall Astra and Jaguar XE now in full production.  Demand remains buoyant in the UK, EU and US and I believe that demand has bottomed out in China and Russia.

“Although the UK and US markets are close to their peaks, the EU is still below its pre-recession demand levels suggesting that there is still plenty of room for further growth in our major export market. 2016 is shaping up to be a great year for UK car manufacturers and I forecast that the all-time production record will be set in 2020.”