Ten years ago, the British car industry appeared to have hit rock bottom with the demise of MG Rover and improvements in the industry looked very slim, however, now things are looking much brighter.
The most spectacular success story is Jaguar Land Rover which has been well invested in by its parent company ‘Tata’, since their acquisition from Ford five years ago. Rolls Royce have breached the 4000 cars a year production barrier for the first time with its parent company, and with BMW also investing wisely it shows foreign investment in to the British motor trade is paying off.
Production has gone upmarket, instead of mass produced cheap run-arounds the market is now working on producing quality branded cars for the middle and upper classes. Other leading manufacturers such as Honda and Ford have also pumped serious investment into their United Kingdom operations. So far this year over £1 billion in investment has been announced for car manufacturing. The old days of union confrontation with car companies have now been replaced by a much friendlier collaboration, this is paying big dividends and giving the industry much more confidence as a whole. With a massive 80 percent of cars produced in the United Kingdom sold for export, 160,000 people employed directly and over 700,000 more employed in the wider automotive sector; it appears the bad old days are finally over!
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The only stumbling block at the moment is the UK is more of an assembler of cars than a pure manufacturer, with only a third of the parts used are being manufactured here. This hasn’t stopped the Chancellor, George Osborne proudly hailing the British motor industry as a massive success story for Britain’s economic growth. He has even promised £100 million in investment into driverless car technology with pilot schemes already underway in Bristol, Milton Keynes and Greenwich. With both new and used cars selling well, new car registrations at their highest since 2011 and the United Kingdom’s car manufacturing at its highest point since 2009, dealers are dusting off their trade plates up and down the country confident sales will continue to rise. As consumers carry on investing in that new quality British built automobile and their new insurance policy, it’s entirely possible that right now is the new renaissance for British automotive manufacturing.