UK car production in March 2021 rose by 46.6 per cent as we get the first production figures relating to a lockdown period.
Last month’s UK car production figures were the last lot to be compared to the ‘Pre-Covid’ period, and they fell. But now we’re in to comparing figures with a period affected by Covid so, unsurprisingly, car production figures have grown – by 46.6 per cent.
With UK car plants now working at full capacity – well, excluding some disruptions from distancing and chip shortages – they have managed to churn out 115,498 cars, although that’s still down by 22.9 per cent – 24,047 cars – compared to the five year average for March.
The bulk of the production went to exports – up 54 per cent on last year – with exports to the EU up 33.5 per cent, to the US by 36.4 per cent and to Asia by 54.1 per cent, with cars produced for the UK market rising by 19.4 per cent.
Unsurprisingly, production of alternatively-fuelled cars rose and now accounts for a fifth of production (that includes hybrid, PHEV and BEV).
Mike Hawes, SMMT CEO, said:
The first rise for UK car production since summer 2019 is a major step in the right direction but belies the underlying situation. With factories shut for much of March 2020, output was always going to be up but it remains below average, with some £11bn worth of production lost over the past year. Whilst the Covid situation is improving in the UK and in some major export markets, manufacturers are still struggling to manage residual issues, most notably the global semiconductor shortage.