As England heads into a second round of lockdown, the latest data from the SMMT reveals that there were 216,643 engines built in the UK through September, representing a decline in output of -2.4%. Production for domestic and overseas markets fell -0.8% and -3.3% respectively, while year-to-date output remained down -31.4%.
Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, commented on the figures: “The ongoing decline in UK engine production is particularly concerning. Manufacturers are in dire need of stability and business confidence to inspire demand if they are to fully reboot production. But with time running out to secure a critical free trade agreement with the EU – by far our biggest trading partner – the uncertainty continues with investment stifled. We urge negotiators on both sides to keep working on a deal that will support the automotive sector and its highly integrated supply chains.”
Q4 was already looking challenging for manufacturers, and with the latest round of government measures looking set to further limit the car-buying public’s access to vehicles, both in the UK and across Europe, a further contraction looks likely.