The UK Automotive Industry - Statistics & Facts

Once the largest exporter of cars in the world, the United Kingdom (UK) has a special relationship with the automotive industry. Automobile brands originating in the UK still hold prestige around the world, even if many are currently owned by foreign companies. Though it took a hit during the economic recession, the UK motor industry has made a strong recovery – in 2017 it contributed 20.2 billion British pounds to the overall economy, nearly double the amount recorded in 2010. According to provisional results, motor vehicle manufacturing had generated roughly 70 billion euros in turnover in 2017, though figures had decreased in the past two years.

In 2018, the UK had produced a total of 1.52 million passenger cars, a decline from previous years. The leading manufacturer was home brand Jaguar Land Rover, closely followed by Japanese car maker Nissan. Both had produced around 500 thousand vehicles through factories in the UK.

New registrations of passenger cars have stayed relatively stable in the past fourteen years, part from noticeable declines in 2009 and 2011. Figures for 2017 amounted to 2.5 million and were on a similar level to 2003. In 2018, the most popular car model was the Ford Fiesta, with nearly 96,000 units sold. The manufacturer Ford also accounted for two other best-selling models among the top ten, more than any other car maker.

Regarding international trading, export volumes of passenger cars recorded a peak of 1.35 million units in 2016. However, figures had declined to 1.24 million two years later. Between 2015 and 2017, the main export destination was the EU, which accounted for more than half of all foreign sales in those years.

In terms of changes of the consumer price index (CPI), in 2018 the CPI of vehicle purchases was measured at 103.1, which was a jump of more than 3 points from the year prior. By comparison, CPI of second-hand cars had been net declining since 2010.

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Automotive industry in the United Kingdom - Important statistics

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The UK Automotive Industry Infographic - Honda in the UK

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