UK commercial vehicle (CV) production declined 11.7% in September, hit by ongoing political and economic uncertainty.
New figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) show around 7,320 units were manufactured last month, almost 1,000 fewer than in the same period in 2018, with output for overseas markets up some 25.4%, but production for the domestic market down 44.5%.
Performance in the year to date remains down, falling by 13.2% overall, driven by the decline in export orders, down more than 7,400 units. Production for the UK is also down, by -2.6%, although only four in ten British-made CVs remains in the UK given the export focus of the industry.
Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said: “It’s been a pretty turbulent first nine months for UK commercial vehicle production, with model changeovers and the variable pattern of fleet buying cycles affecting output. While it is worrying to see a fall in September domestic orders, the vast majority of our CV output is shipped overseas, mostly into the EU, and so to ensure ongoing sector competitiveness we need a truly ambitious future relationship based on tariff-free and frictionless trade.”