Stars of the UK’s automotive industry will be showcasing their products and talents at the Science Museum from 24 July as part of the six-week ‘Make it in Great Britain’ exhibition, celebrating the success of British manufacturing across all sectors. The free exhibition aims to raise awareness of the dynamic, advanced and innovative industry that exists in the UK today, and dispel beliefs that Britain ‘does not make anything anymore’.

Leading automotive companies including GKN, Jaguar Land Rover and McLaren are among those taking part in the national exhibition, where visitors will get to see their products and ideas up close, and learn about some of the amazing career opportunities that the industry has to offer.

Beating competition from hundreds of other UK companies, Axon Automotive, electric vehicle charging company POD Point, and low carbon power technology company Intelligent Energy are also among the businesses showcasing their work at the Science Museum.

Commenting on the exhibition, Business Minister Mark Prisk said, “Manufacturing accounts for 8% of total UK employment and well over half of export goods, yet current perceptions of the industry are out of date and do not reflect that reality.

“I hope that as many people as possible visit the exhibition and see all of the great examples of British design and manufacturing – it will be spectacular.”

Paul Everitt, SMMT Chief Executive said, “The UK automotive industry is leading economic recovery with increased manufacturing output, record export volumes and new jobs being created on the back of major international investment in the sector. The industry also offers fantastic career and skills opportunities for young people across a huge variety of disciplines from design, engineering, supply chain and manufacturing to retail and aftermarket. The sector plays a major role in the UK economy, so we’re delighted to see automotive companies celebrated as some of the stars of UK manufacturing.”

The exhibition is the culmination of the ‘Make it in Great Britain’ campaign; an initiative launched by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills last year which aims to challenge outdated opinions of the UK manufacturing industry, worth approximately £130bn to the UK economy each year and employing 2.5 million people. UK automotive alone accounts for a £55 billion turnover and £12 billion value added to the economy, employing more than 700,000 across the sector, with 140,000 employed specifically in automotive manufacturing.

The UK is home to a range of manufacturers who continue to ‘Make it in Great Britain’, including:

  • Seven volume car manufacturers.
  • Seven commercial vehicle manufacturers.
  • 10 bus and coach manufacturers.
  • Eight major premium and sports car producers, and more than 100 specialist brands.
  • Eight Formula One teams.

Alongside the exhibition, 30 young people have been named as the rising stars of the manufacturing sector by ‘Make it in Great Britain’, with five of the finalists coming directly from the UK automotive industry.

All aged under 30, the finalists were selected for being true high-flyers, standing out from their peers and demonstrating passion, enthusiasm and ambition in their roles. The five young people selected from the UK motor industry include:

  • Charlotte Watling – Bentley Motors
  • Hannah Proffitt – Bentley Motors
  • Ryan Hopkin – Ford of Britain
  • Bernadette Collins – McLaren
  • Kevin Kelly – Nissan

Going on to act as ambassadors for the ‘Make it in Great Britain’ campaign, which aims to challenge outdated opinions and transform the image of modern manufacturing, the finalists will have a special role in engaging other young people, to ensure that the next generation is aware of career opportunities in manufacturing industries.

The exhibition will be open from 24 July to 9 September and is free to visit.