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UK: Car output down 8.9% in August

By Dave Leggett | 20 September 2012

UK car production fell 8.9% in August, but remains up 12.7% over the year-to-date, according to data released by SMMT.

Car production in August reached 78,577 units and in the first eight months totalled 955,084 units.

The rise over the year has been underpinned by strong exports, especially to markets outside of Europe. 

CV output rose 18.3% in the month, but fell 5.5% during the first eight months of 2012.

August is a low volume month, but the industry will be anxiously awaiting the September figures to gauge whether a significant downturn is in prospect due to declining demand in Europe and slower growth in some markets around the world.

The SMMT, however, remains upbeat on prospects (and some UK manufacturers continue to report strong sales this year). Car exports in the first eight months are up 12.5% at 786,500 units.

"Volumes are traditionally low and variable in August as manufacturers use the holiday period to undertake important maintenance and facility upgrades," said Paul Everitt, SMMT Chief Executive.

"Continued weak demand in Europe is a concern, although significant new investment and stronger demand from better performing global markets will ensure UK output continues on an upward trend."

SMMT Cars   Commercial Vehicles   Total Vehicles   Total Engines  
Data. 8/12/2012 YTD-12 8/12/2012 YTD-12 8/12/2012 YTD-12 8/12/2012 YTD-12
Total 78577 955084 7608 72708 86185 1027792 149024 1669251
% change -8.9% 12.7% 18.3% -5.5% -7% 11.2% 12.5% 1.5%
Export 61812 786500 3960 42790 65772 829290 87286 1052969
% change -8.1% 12.5% 11% -4.6% -7.2% 11.4% -1.2% -11.8%
% of total 78.7% 82.3% 52.1% 58.9% 76.3% 80.7% 58.6% 63.1%
Home 16765 168584 3648 29918 20413 198502 61738 616282
% change -11.6% 14% 27.3% -6.8% -6.5% 10.3% 39.7% 36.6%
% of total 21.3% 17.7% 47.9% 41.1% 23.7% 19.3% 41.4% 36.9%