Car production last month accelerated sharply, rising 64.8 per cent on the January 2009 total.
Commercial vehicle (CV) production in January 2010 also rose - going up 9.6 per cent compared with January 2009, the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) said.
The car production increase was the largest since May 1976, while the CV rise was the second consecutive monthly increase.
The big rise, with a total of 101,190 cars being made in the UK last month, was expected as the industry was stuck deep in the recession this time last year.
With demand for new vehicles low, companies cut back on production at the beginning of 2009, with Honda ceasing manufacturing at its plant at Swindon in Wiltshire for four months from February to May.
It was not until later in the year, following a leap in sales sparked by the Government’s car scrappage scheme, that car and CV production began to pick up.
The SMMT said UK engine production last month rose 26.3 per cent compared with January 2009.
SMMT chief executive Paul Everitt added: “Vehicle and engine production rose for a third successive month in January, demonstrating the continued success of global scrappage incentive schemes.
“Despite the close of the UK scheme next month, SMMT expects a modest recovery in 2010 output as economic growth, a competitive exchange rate and the introduction of innovative new models to UK plants help to lift manufacturing levels above those seen in 2009.”