UK car makers reach one million vehicles

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UK car manufacturers built over one million vehicles in the first seven months of the year, the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) has said.

On top of this, the figure of 1.02m cars built in the year to July represents a 12.3% increase on last year, making this year the first to reach the million car milestone as early as July since 2004. During the year as a whole, the SMMT estimate that over three quarters of a million UK-built cars will be destined for overseas markets.

“UK car production in 2016 is booming, with new British-built models in demand across the world,” said Mike Hawes, chief executive of the SMMT.

However, on a domestic scale, Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking have warned that demand for new cars is ‘cooling’, but the industry is better placed than ever to be able to cope with fluctuations in demand.

“Today manufacturing output is much more closely aligned to demand, and so we wouldn’t expect to see any dramatic falls in production,” said Stuart Apperley of Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking.

The strong figures have come in spite of the uncertainty surrounding the industry post-Brexit. Automotive manufacturers face suffering more than most after the decision because the EU imposes a 10% import tariff on vehicles manufactured outside the union. The SMMT were strong campaigners for the Remain campaign during the run-up to the referendum.

"Future success will depend on continued new car demand and attracting the next wave of investment so Britain must demonstrate it remains competitive and open for business," Hawes said.