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UK automotive sector manufactures record number of vehicles

Passenger Car

The UK automotive sector made in excess of a million cars and commercial vehicles (CVs) in 2023 – the first time to produce these figures since 2019.

Some 120,357 CVs and 905,117 cars were produced last year to make a total 1,025,474 vehicles – a 17% increase on 2022. The year ended with a particularly strong month, with CV production up 80.3% and car production up 20.7% year on year.

Last year also saw impressive public and private investment commitments, totalling £23.7 billion.

Electric vehicles (EVs) continued to account for a growing proportion of vehicle production. The various battery and hybrid EVs together accounted for 38.3% of production at 346,451 units, an increase of 48.0% on the previous year. EVs have now become so popular that major brands like Castrol and Shell have developed specialised lubricant, grease and coolant ranges to meet their specific needs.

The Chief Executive of the SMMT, Mike Hawes, said about the news:

“Receding supply chain challenges, new model introductions and a massive £23.7 billion of investment put UK vehicle production firmly back on track in 2023. The industry will now focus on the delivery of these commitments, transitioning the sector at pace to electric, and scaling up the supply chain.”

He added that competitiveness must continue to be the main focus of the industry and government amid intense global competition. He pointed out that despite the sector being in a considerably better place compared to the previous year, there were still unrelenting challenges to tackle.

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