Car production recovery in UK hitting turbulence, says GlobalData

Following the news from the SMMT that 54,962 cars were produced in the UK in May, well up on Covid-wrought May 2020 (5,314 cars produced), but still down 52.6% on 2019’s level;

David Leggett, Automotive Analyst at GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, offers his view:

“The decline to UK car output in May versus pre-pandemic levels comes as little surprise. Recovery this year is hitting some turbulence. Exports are key and a look around the world shows the fragility of the demand recovery in most markets.

“Many economies are struggling, Covid-19 infection rates remain high, and the progression of new variants and the stringency of lockdown measures all affect light vehicle sales. Further, there are supply constraints – principally in the shape of semiconductor shortages – impacting many manufacturers and models, further holding back sales.

“GlobalData’s forecast for global light vehicle sales this year has just been downgraded to 85.5 million, a 13% increase on 2020 but 4% lower than 2019’s total – and that 2021 annual forecast assumes accelerated sales in the second half of this year.

“We are in recovery from an unprecedented 2020, but it’s a fragile recovery and May’s UK output numbers highlight that.”

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