Car production helped British manufacturing output increase by 0.2% in the three months to July, according to the Index of Production released by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) today.
Output of manufacturing industries grew by 0.9% over the month to July, the second consecutive monthly increase and the fastest growth rate for 18 months.
Car makers saw output increase by 10.4% over the month and 14.2% over the three months to July. This contributed to a 6.9% rise in the manufacture of transport and transport equipment.
The other biggest manufacturing sector rises were 8.4% growth in wood and wood products and 3.9% in rubber and plastic products.
The sectors with the biggest falls in output were electrical and optical equipment, which dropped by 1.9%, machinery and equipment, which fell by 2.7%, and metals and metal products, falling by 1.9%.
Overall production was flat in the three months to July 2009. Output fell by 7.3% compared with the same three month period a year ago.