British engine production falls 27.0% in 2020 as pandemic hits output

Covid-19 News | Manufacturing | Reports | Transport & Distribution

UK engine manufacturing down was down 27.0% in 2020 to just over 1.8 million units – largely as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Production for domestic and overseas markets fell 23.4% and 29.1% respectively during the same time period.

December saw production fall 7.9%, round off a bleak year for sector.

Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said: “2020 was a tough year for UK engine manufacturers with the coronavirus pandemic chiefly responsible for the fall in output. That said, factories still turned out more than 1.8 million internal combustion engines, with the majority of these exported globally.

“This reinforces how important it is that, in the increasingly rapid transition to electrification, the UK’s skilled engine manufacturing workforce is not left behind, as they should be a critical component in positioning the country as a competitive place to produce ultra-low and zero emission vehicles.”

The automotive industry still accounts for a collective £78.9bn turnover and £15.3bn value-added within the UK economy.

With some 180,000 people employed directly in manufacturing and 864,000 across the wider automotive industry, it accounts for 13% of total UK export of goods and invests more than £3bn each year in automotive R&D.

More than 30 manufacturers build some 70 models of vehicle in the UK, supported by 2,500 component providers.

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