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May 19, 2011    

UK car production down in April

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by Kay Murchie

Figures published today by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) revealed a sharp fall in UK car production for the month of April, disrupted by supply shortages, resulting from the Japanese earthquake and tsunami.

Japan’s three major carmakers (Toyota, Nissan and Honda) all have operations in the UK, with the latter halving its production in April.

UK car production fell 12% versus the same month a year ago, the SMMT said, with the total number of cars produced at 86,306.

However, for the year-to-date, car production is 7% higher than in the same period last year, the Society added.

Meanwhile, commercial vehicle production was 20% lower in April at 8,633 units.

Commenting on today’s figures, Paul Everitt, SMMT chief executive, said: “All manufacturers are working hard to overcome supply shortages and we expect any downturn to be short lived.

“The outlook for the UK motor industry is extremely good and this should generate new opportunities for vehicle manufacturers and suppliers,” he added.

The figures come shortly after the SMMT revealed UK car sales fell by 7.4% in April compared with the same month in 2010.

The SMMT said the number of new cars sold in the month was 138,000 – representing the tenth consecutive monthly fall in sales.

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