UK car plants' best year since 2005 predicted

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UK car plants' best year since 2005 predicted

Car manufacturing in the UK could be enjoying its most prosperous year since 2005, according to figures from the Confederation of British Industry (CBI).

The latest sales statistics show that the number of cars built in Britain increased by 16.2 per cent to 91,282 in August.

That means that by the end of the month, 984,545 cars have been produced in the UK so far this year.

Production for the whole of 2013 is therefore now being predicted to top 1.54 million, a figure which would be the highest since 2005.

Statistics from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders showed that an average of nearly 3,000 vehicles were produced every day in the UK last month.

The Nissan Qashqai is leading the charge, having now become the UK's best-selling British-made car. Its stable-mate, the Juke, and BMW's Mini take the next two spots in that table.

Meanwhile, the Ford Fiesta is still Britain's best-selling car overall, with the Ford Focus in second place and Vauxhall's Corsa in third.

The new figures put paid to the idea that car manufacturing in the UK is in the doldrums.

While it's true that British-owned marques are now few and far between, many of our plants are now owned and operated by foreign firms, and they often talk of Britain's factories as beacons of the industry.

Nissan describes its Sunderland plant as "an international benchmark for productivity and quality", while Toyota says its UK operation, consisting of factories on Deeside (in north Wales) and at Burnaston in Derbyshire, "a leading producer of core vehicles and engines for Toyota in Europe."