Car manufacturing picks up pace in March

UK car production rose 12% in March to 142,158 units, bringing 2014-to-date growth to 2.9%. European demand for cars strengthened and almost 80% of cars manufactured are for global export markets, enhancing UK balance of trade.

Mike Hawes, chief executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders, said: "The 12% growth in UK car production in March is a significant step forward after a period of product changes at the start to the year. "After several years in the doldrums, European demand for new cars is now picking up with growth in the last seven months. This is a welcome boost for the UK's volume manufacturers for whom Europe is the key market. "As new models are launched and investments realised, the sector remains on course for all-time record levels of output by 2017."