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The UK sold nearly half as many cars in April ’19 compared to ‘18

Plus, engine production in the UK falls by a quarter year on year. Uh-oh...

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“Dismal” is how the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders described April 2019’s new car production performance. Not ‘poor’. Not ‘a bit salty’. Not even ‘lightly melancholy’. No. Dismal.

That’s because in April 2019, the UK shifted 70,971 cars, which still sounds like a lot, but not when you compare it to April 2018. The SMMT tells us last year, the UK shifted 127,970 cars in the same month.

That’s a fall of 44.5 per cent, or nearly half as many cars sold. “April’s dismal performance,” the SMMT said, “the 11th straight month of decline, exacerbated the underlying downward trend.” They cited stuff like factory shutdowns – to mitigate against March’s Brexit uncertainty – as well as bringing forward manufacturing stoppages normally scheduled for summer, and falling international demand.

The SMMT reckons the ‘dismal’ performance might ease up before the year is out, but still. “Today’s figures are evidence of the vast cost and upheaval Brexit uncertainty has already wrought on UK automotive manufacturing business and workers,” SMMT boss Mike Hawes said.

In yet more salty news, the UK’s engine manufacturing took a 23.4 per cent year on year hit too, with 177k British-built engines produced in April ’19 compared to 232k in April ’18.

Not really sure how to rescue your mood at this stage, if we’re being honest. Perhaps a picture of a pair of Fiesta ST pups living their best lives on track. There, better.

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