Aston Martin has warned MPs that it could be forced to leave the United Kingdom if no deal is reached on Brexit before the Article 50 notice period runs out in March 2019. Aston Martin's Finance Director, William Wilson, told the UK Parliament's Select Committee on Tuesday that the company may not be able to sell in Europe if the British Vehicle Certification Agency can not renew Aston Martin's license.
Both joined Wilson in calling for clarity over a Brexit transition deal.
"We produce our cars exclusively in Britain and will continue to do".
"For Aston Martin, it's simpler than for larger global players", Wilson told the committee.
Carmakers in the United Kingdom could endure "semi-catastrophic" production interruptions if the European Union stops automatically accepting the nation's vehicle certification program once Brexit comes into effect, executives told British lawmakers.
He said: "Rectifying to the new type-approval - be that federal, USA or Chinese type approval - or even trying to retroactively apply to use the European type approval would mean stopping our production. During the transition, we would have to see how Aston Martin could recertify under a non-VCA approval structure".
Under current laws, all new cars made in the United Kingdom must have Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA) approval, which is valid in the EU. 70% of cars circulating in the United Kingdom are imported, mostly from the EU.
Nearly 80% of the cars manufactured in the United Kingdom are exported, just under half of which go to the European Union, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders. Keating told the MPs that Honda would take 18 months to get its systems ready for new customs procedures for exporting to Europe. Noting that Honda imported two million components from Europe each day, he estimated a 15-minute delay at customs would cost the firm £850,000 a year, because the company carries just one hour of stock on its shelves. Around 70% of the cars sold in the United Kingdom are also imported from the EU.
Free trade agreements require that about 60% of goods must originate from within the countries making the agreement.
Mike Hawes, chief executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, and Patrick Keating, Honda Motor Europe's government affairs manager, also gave evidence to the committee.