Vauxhall's decision to cut 400 jobs from its Ellesmere Port plant is to do with market changes, not Brexit, a spokesman has told Autocar.
The PSA Group-owned British company’s Cheshire site is being taken down a “glide path” from two shifts to one, as bosses attempt to boost efficiency at a time when output has slumped by 20% in one year.
Ellesmere Port, which currently builds the Astra, is on course to produce 110,000 cars in 2017, which will be 30,000 short of its 2016 figure. The output decrease has been attributed to growing sales of SUVs, which have impacted demand for saloons and larger hatchbacks. Sales of the former have fallen by more than 50% compared with a decade ago.
“This is all to do with market changes,” said the spokesman. “This plant needs to be financially sound as we move forward to next-generation products. We need to be in a profitability zone that puts us on par with the rest of the PSA Group.”