Automotive News – Late August 2022

UK commercial vehicle output continues growth with best July for six years.

  • UK commercial vehicle (CV) production rises 43.9% to 8,097 units in the best July since 2016 and eleventh consecutive month of growth.
  • Overseas demand increases by 34.2%, while production for Britain’s CV market grows by 58.5%.
  • UK manufacturing is up 46.9% since January, at 58,693, the best year to date since 2012.

UK commercial vehicle (CV) production grew by 43.9% in July, with 8,097 units of the latest vans, buses, trucks, coaches and taxis rolling off British factory lines, according to the figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). Output in July was the highest for the month since 2016 and rounded off the best performing first seven months to a year in a decade, with 58,693 CVs built in Britain so far this year.


UK car production rises for third consecutive month.

  • UK car manufacturing output rises 8.6% in July, the third consecutive month of growth.
  • Production of hybrid, plug-in hybrid and electric vehicles surges 24.7% in the month.
  • Volumes year-to-date down -16.5% to 461,174, driven by falling exports and structural changes.

UK car production rose for the third consecutive month in July, up 8.6% to 58,043 units, according to the latest figures published today by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). The performance must be set in context, however, as it is compared with July 2021, which was the worst July since 1956 as car makers faced multiple issues including the global shortage of semiconductors and staff absences arising from the ‘pingdemic’ forcing some to alter summer shutdown timings to help manage the challenge.


An electric car manufacturer is set to move to a town in Oxfordshire to establish its first UK head office.

Polestar, manufacturer of performance-focused electric vehicles, will establish its first UK head office and a new customer test drive hub at Bicester Heritage, a historic vehicle site in Bicester.

Opening in December 2022, Polestar Bicester will be a new multi-purpose location following the development of one of the existing two-storey buildings in the Heritage Quarter.

The headquarters, located on the upper floor, will include operational staff supporting the approximately 8000 customers with Polestars on UK roads.


Bus and coach demand struggles to recover from pandemic.

  • 1,066 new buses and coaches registered in Britain from April to June, up 0.6% on the same period last year.
  • Q2 performance puts first half of 2022 up 17.9% year-on-year, with 2,040 vehicles registered – but market remains down -46.4% on the pre-pandemic five-year average.
  • Ongoing weak ridership levels acting as discouragement to investment.

The UK new bus and coach market grew by 0.6% to 1,066 units in the second quarter, according to figures released today by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). Bus and coach sales so far this year stand at 2,040 units, up 17.9% on last year thanks to the recovery in Q1, but still down -46.4% on the pre-pandemic five-year average.


Demand for trucks steady in supply constrained market.

  • UK heavy goods vehicle (HGV) registrations rise slightly by 0.4% to 9,533 units in the second quarter of 2022.
  • Half-year registrations down -1.0% on 2021 and -29.5% below pre-pandemic 2019, as semiconductor and raw materials shortages continue to hamper supply.
  • Action needed to ensure the UK remains a competitive market for new zero emission trucks.

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