Car production in the United Kingdom (UK) dipped 20.8pc in July to 85,696 units amid factories facing challenging situations while increasing production to meet the gradual rise in demand, according to data released by Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). The data also stated that commercial vehicle production has inched up by 3.6pc in July to 5,234 units from the prior year.
In July, car manufacturers produced 13,434 units for home consumption, down 37.1pc from the previous year and for exports, 72,262 cars were produced in July, down 16pc from the prior year. For first seven months of the year, total production is down 39pc from the prior year at 467,053 cars.
Car production in the UK market has improved compared to May and June. Exports accounted for more than eight out of 10 vehicles manufactured in July with buyers in overseas markets, including the EU, China and the US, attracted to the latest UK car models.
Japanese automaker Honda plans to shift a part of its production capacity from the UK to Japan amid weak auto sales in Europe, according to local media reports. The plant is Honda’s only production base in Europe.
Demand for commercial vehicle from European markets drove the majority of orders. More than half of all units built in July were shipped to Europe which contributed to overall exports growth of 4.8pc. Dealers across England, Scotland and Wales were able to re-open for the first full month to fulfil pent-up demand which resulted in production growth over last year.
Lower car production is hurting the already struggling steel makers in the country. The apparent steel consumption in the EU fell by 5.3pc in 2019 from the prior year. Post-pandemic, Eurofer expects steel consumption to lag until early 2021 as demand from steel-using sectors like auto industry remains weak.