British cars are being made with more British-sourced components as the UK automotive industry’s renaissance continues apace, new research reveals. Figures from a new Automotive Council report show that domestic component makers sold 19 per cent more products to UK vehicle producers last year than in 2013.
SMMT figures show that 1,528,148 cars weremanufactured in the UK in 2014 – a 1.2 per cent increase on the previous year and the best year since 2007. In addition, the strongest December in a decade saw 108,721 cars produced; up 27.1 per cent on December 2013. This growth came despite challenges in some export markets.
“The RMI welcomes the news of the planned £1 minimum wage increase for apprentices in the UK,” said Sue Robinson, director of the Retail Motor Industry Federation, the leading automotive trade body in the UK.
Responding to Vince Cable’s announcement on plans to begin trials of driverless cars in the UK next year, motor insurance industry-established automotive research centre Thatcham Research said that while fully driverless cars “are an exciting glimpse of the future with substantial potential to improve road safety,” it opines that the UK car fleet “has a long way to go” before the technology should be unleashed on the motoring public.
Up to three cities in the UK will be selected as part of a £10 million competition to host trials of driverless cars, shared Business Secretary Vince Cable today. He said the government is calling on cities to join together with businesses and research organisations to put forward proposals to become a test location. The trials will get underway in January 2015 and are expected to last between 18 and 36 months. Ministers have also launched a review into current road regulations in order to ensure there is an appropriate regime for testing driverless cars in the UK.