Many iconic British car brands are now owned by non-UK companies – Mini is part of BMW, Land Rover and Jaguar belong to Indian firm Tata, and Bentley is owned by the VW Group.
But there are plenty of cars that are still built in the UK. Indeed, total vehicle output here increased in 2012 to 1.58 million units, the highest level since 2008. A few British-built models may come as a bit of a surprise, though.
So here’s our list of the top 10 UK-built cars, in order of their Which? test scores, which are obtained after in-depth, measurable and totally independent testing.
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1. Mini Clubman (2007-) Built in Cowley, Oxford
The Clubman is a modern interpretation of the original 1960s Mini estate. The main purpose of the Clubman is to deliver increased practicality while keeping the style and fun-to-drive character of the Mini hatchback.
2. Honda Jazz (2008-) Built in Swindon, Wiltshire
The popular Honda Jazz is now in its second generation. For a supermini, it has a phenomenally flexible cabin and a huge boot as well. Owners love the Jazz, too, thanks to its excellent reliability.
3. Honda CR-V (2012-) Built in Swindon, Wiltshire
The CR-V is Honda’s ‘soft-roader’ answer to the Toyota RAV4. We’ve now into the fourth generation of CR-V, which boasts great levels of safety, generous equipment and plenty of practicality.
4. Toyota Avensis (2009-) Built in Burnaston, Derbyshire
If you’re after a dependable motoring companion, the Toyota Avensis could be the ideal car for you. It’s a solidly built large car, available in highly practical hatchback and saloon forms.
5. Honda Civic (2012-) Built in Swindon, Wiltshire
The Civic hatchback is Honda’s single most important model. This eighth-generation model boasts bold styling and a brave cabin design. The Civic competes against the more conservative Ford Focus and VW Golf.
6. Mini Hatchback (2007-) Built in Cowley, Oxford
Relaunched by BMW in 2001, the Mini brand has become a massive motoring success story. The Mk2 hatchback retains its retro styling, unique interior and fun-to-drive character. It’s also highly desirable and holds its value well.
7. Toyota Avensis Tourer (2009-) Built in Burnaston, Derbyshire
If you want a dependable load-lugger, the Avensis Tourer not only packs plenty of interior space and a huge boot, it’s also the most reliable estate car in our latest Which? Car Survey.
8. Nissan Qashqai (2007-) Built in Sunderland
The Nissan Qashqai is the car credited with starting the whole ‘crossover’ trend. Launched in 2007, it’s a different type of family car: high-riding yet compact, with SUV styling and the option of part-time four-wheel drive.
9. Jaguar XK (2006-) Built in Birmingham
Is it a Jaguar or an Aston Martin? The exotic-looking XK, a slinky coupe or sleek canvas-roofed convertible, is as glamorous and gorgeous as its James Bond rival, and is no mean performer.
=10. Mini Convertible (2009-) Built in Cowley, Oxford
BMW launched the Mini Convertible with its two-stage opening soft-top in 2004. A revamped Mk2 model was introduced in 2009, and continues to be sold alongside the sportier Mini Roadster, which arrived in 2012.
=10. Mini Coupe (2011-) Built in Cowley, Oxford
The Coupe arrived in 2011 as yet another offshoot of the growing Mini range. Its most distinctive feature is its dramatically lowered and rounded roofline, as well as some sporty tweaks under the body.