There was a modest increase in UK commercial vehicle production in September, figures showed.

There were 7,799 CVs produced, a 1.8% increase on 2020, although output remained 8.1% below the five-year average for the month, according to the SMMT.

The automotive association said production had declined by 35.1% in August and so any increase was good news, particularly when compared to a strong September 2020 when volumes were driven by the fulfilment of several large fleet orders.

The latest increase was due in large part to a rise in domestic demand (27.3%), with CVs produced for the overseas market declining by 12.4%.

Over the year-to-date, production of CVs in 2021 has increased by 15.4%. However this is on a weak 2020 and output remained down by almost a fifth (19.5%) against the pre-Covid five-year average.

The SMMT said this reduction reflects the ongoing impact of the semiconductor shortage in factories around the world.

Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said: “Following last month’s decline in commercial vehicle production, the industry is back on track in September.

“This is particularly good news when viewed in context against last September, which was a strong month given the fulfilment of several large fleet orders.

“The sector is not out of the woods yet, however, and it still continues to face challenges, primarily from the global shortage of semiconductors, which is set to continue into next year.”