Honda's Swindon factory to stop production for six days after Brexit

10 January 2019, 16:20 | Updated: 10 January 2019, 19:00

Honda will stop production for six days in April due to Brexit logistics and border disruption, Sky News has learnt.

Production at its Swindon plant will halt days after the UK leaves the EU to help the company cope with any problems around the exporting of cars and importing of spare parts.

Honda says 35% of cars exported from the factory go to the EU and 40% of the components used there are imported from the bloc.

They are delivered to Swindon daily by 350 lorries, often directly to the manufacturing line.

The Japanese firm said it had been "assessing how best to prepare for any disruption caused by logistics and border issues following the UK leaving the EU on 29 March 2019".

It added: "To ensure Honda is well placed to adjust to all possible outcomes, we are planing six non-production days in April 2019.

"This is to facilitate production recovery activity following any delays at borders on parts.

"These contingency provisions have been put in place to best mitigate the risk of disruption to production operations at the Swindon factory."

The plans emerged as Japan's prime minister Shinzo Abe met Theresa May - and as rivals Jaguar Land Rover and Ford announced thousands of job cuts.

In October last year, Honda UK, along with Ford, Vauxhall and the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders submitted evidence to the business select committee on the likely impact of Brexit on the British car industry.

Honda's submission gave the gravest warnings of the group, saying it might be forced to close facilities in the UK in the event of a "no-deal" Brexit.

It said that if the UK crashed out of the EU without a deal and was forced to default to World Trade Organisation tariffs, an imposed 10% tariff on its exports to the eurozone "would make our vehicles uncompetitive, and would impose costs we cannot afford to absorb".