Vauxhall Vivaro on the Luton production line

Figures released by the SMMT show that UK commercial vehicle production fell by 4.3% in March, compared with the same month last year. A total of 8,041 units were produced in March.

Overseas demand rose for the seventh consecutive month, with sales in March up 7.8% to 4,855 units. Total CV exports for the first quarter of 2017 rose by 21.2%, making them account for 64.3% of all UK CV production, the highest level for seven years.

In spite of this high overseas demand, CV production for the first quarter of the year dipped by 0.7%, compared with 2016, as a result of a drop in domestic sales. Output for the domestic market fell 18.4% in March, following a high level of demand among UK operators in 2015 and 2016.

Assessing the situation, Mike Hawes, Chief Executive of the SMMT, said: “UK CV production remains positive and continuing growth in overseas demand highlights the quality and competitiveness of our products.”

Noting the overseas popularity of British CVs, Hawes urged the government to seek a free trade deal in the Brexit negotiations to “maintain competitiveness and secure the future of CV manufacturing.”

SMMT releases figures for UK CV production in March (The Van Expert)
CV production in the first quarter of 2017 fell 0.7% compared with 2016.
Katharine Morgan

Katharine graduated from university in 2016 with a degree in Classics. She contributes to both The Car Expert and The Van Expert and manages their social media accounts.