The UK automotive industry generated record turnover of £77.5bn in 2016, marking seven years of consecutive growth, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).
The ‘2017 Automotive Sustainability Report’ found that the industry’s environmental impact had improved, with the SMMT reporting a fall in the amount of total waste going to landfill to 0.9%.
Both car production and vehicle registration grew to record levels in 2016, up 8.9% and 0.2% respectively year-on-year, to 1.73m cars produced, and 2.69m registered.
The SMMT reported that productivity also increased in 2016, rising to 11.8 vehicles produced for each person employed in the industry.
Turnover increased by 9% on 2015’s figure, with additional value to the UK economy assessed to be £21.5bn, an increase of 7.3%.
Spending on research and development also increased, reaching £2.75bn in 2016 compared with £2.5bn the previous year.
Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive said: “Today’s results demonstrate how UK automotive is delivering growth across the UK, boosting productivity and improving environmental performance.
“This has been driven by massive investment, in new models, plants, innovation and one of the world’s most skilled workforces.”
The results come amid the SMMT’s warning that the UK should seek a transitional arrangement with the EU in order to avoid a ‘cliff edge’ for the automotive industry after Brexit.
Hawes added: “For UK auto manufacturing to continue to thrive, we need clarity on the future, post Brexit, to encourage ongoing investment and growth.”