UK car production increases again

* UK production up 62.7% * Weak pound boosting industry * Budget must support car makers...

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What Car? Staff
19 March 2010

UK car production increased dramatically in February compared with February 2009.

February's rise in production of 62.7% is the fourth month in row with a year-on-year increase in output.

Production of engines in the UK also rose sharply in February, with an increase of 58.9% last year.

Weak pound helps the car makers
The weak pound has been cited as a reason for the big increase in production, with exports being boosted as a result.

Paul Everitt, chief executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), said: 'Sterling movement has made UK-built products more competitive, enabling the UK to work through challenging economic conditions.

'UK-built engines and vehicles are exported to more than 100 markets worldwide.'

The benefit of the weak pound was highlighted by the fact that out of the 97,255 cars produced in the UK in February, more than 70% were exported.

Budget is critical
Despite being confident about the UK car industry's future, Paul Everitt said it was essential that the Budget on March 24 did not undermine confidence in the sector.

He said: 'Industry looks to next week's Budget to maintain stability in demand through continued investment in new products.'

A Budget that is sympathetic to the car industry is considered essential, because of the end of the UK scrappage scheme on March 31.

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