The FINANCIAL -- U.K. car manufacturing fell 3.8% in April, despite a rise in those made for British customers, as the number of cars for export fell, an industry body said on May 28, according to Nasdaq.
A total of 128,312 cars were produced in April, compared with 133,437 a year earlier, taking the number to date to 530,505, compared with 538,240 a year earlier, the U.K. Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders said.
Of those cars manufactured in April 29,930 were for British customers, up 11% from 26,930 last April, while the number of cars exported fell 7.6% to 98,832. For the year to date 135,445 cars were manufactured for the home market, a rise of 19%, while those exported fell 7% to 395,061.
The figures come as the U.K. automotive industry gears up for a wave of new models following billions of pounds worth of recent investment into the U.K, the SMMT said. Among the global manufacturers investing in U.K. production are Bentley, Honda, Jaguar Land Rover and MINI--all with new products due to roll off production lines in the next few months.
"U.K. car production has escalated in recent years and continues to perform steadily in 2015. Manufacturers across the country are poised to see yet more growth following multi billion pound investments and, providing global markets perform well, output is on track to reach record levels in the next few years," SMMT Chief Executive Officer Mike Hawes said.
Industry experts have forecast that the U.K. will be making more than 2 million cars a year by 2017, higher than the all-time record of 1.92 million in 1972.