By Debbie Holden 07 Nov 2018 7 min read

What’s the average salary for a career in the automotive industry?

The Office of National Statistics has released figures showing that those who work in the automotive industry (excluding managers and sales professionals) earn an average of £28,331 per year.

Their yearly survey showed that the average salary for men and women combined in the UK (across all jobs) was £29,009, which includes those in both full-time and part work. For those in full time work the average salary is £35,423 and £12,083 for those in part-time.

How much can you earn with a career in the automotive industry?

Drivers wages varied, depending on the type of vehicle they worked with. Driving instructors had the largest full time gross salary, averaging £37,635 for both men and women. Large goods drivers saw a slightly lower annual average of £28,784, bus and coach drivers £26,544 and van drivers £23,274.

The engineering and manufacturing side of the industry varied, too. Vehicle trades and skilled trade workers can earn a range of salaries in the automotive industry. For male and female workers full time, technicians and mechanics took home an average annual salary of £27,568, body builders and repairers £27,534, and paint technicians £25,866. This brings the average wage for skilled trade workers in the automotive industry to £28,587, which is just slightly less than the national full-time average of £35,423.

Those working part time in skilled trade saw a higher part-time salary than the UK national average, taking home £15,294 versus the UK average of £12,083. Vehicle technicians saw a higher than average part time wage, too, taking home £12,142.


But salaries are on the rise

Those that work in the manufacturing side of the automotive industry saw full-time wages increase on average 1.8%, with the highest increase in vehicle body builders and repairers (2.1%) and the lowest being vehicle paint technicians (0.7%).

Vehicle drivers saw a larger increase year on year, with salaries up by 5% across the board. Driving instructors saw a huge increase of 13.1%, whereas coach and bus drivers saw the smallest increase (2.2%)

However in the full picture of the economy this is still very healthy. The ONS UK workers are earning on average 2.5% more year on year. This is where it was sitting just before the 2008 financial crash, which saw a 300,000 people made redundant and an average salary decrease of -2.5% across the board, so good news for those job-hunting!

Women in the automotive industry earn less than their male counterparts

The ONS estimated that across all roles surveyed, there was an average of 9.3% difference between men’s salaries and women’s salaries, with men earning this amount more than women per hour.

The biggest difference was for women working on the assembly line of vehicles, who earned nearly 20% less than their male counterparts, whereas the smallest difference was for work as vehicle operators, the pay gap there being just 2.1%.

You can see the full breakdown of male and female salaries full-time for the automotive industry below:



Male Full Time Female Full Time Male and Female Full Time
Skilled trade workers (vehicles) £28,657 £23,889 £28,587
Assemblers (vehicles) £34,668 £24,829 £34,001
Road Transport Drivers (including HGV, van, bus and coach) £26,165 £21,726 £26,049
Taxi and cab drivers £26,868 £20,092 £26,488
Driving Instructors £37,695 No figure reported £37,695
Mobile Machine Drivers & Operatives £28,194 £24,446 £27,989
Vehicle Valeters and cleaners £17,120 £23,041 £17,514
UK Average £39,003 £29,891 £35,423

Not working