Aston Martin has said it may have to halt production if the UK fails to strike a Brexit deal with the EU.
All new cars in the UK must have Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA) approval, which is valid in the EU.
Without a UK-EU deal, that validity would cease for new cars from March 2019.
Mark Wilson, Aston Martin’s finance chief, said it would have the “semi-catastrophic effect of having to stop production”.
“We’re a British company. We produce our cars exclusively in Britain and will continue to do so,” he said.
“Recertifying to a new type of approval, be that federal US, Chinese or even retrospectively applying to use the EU approval, would mean us stopping our production.”
However, Mr Wilson added: “We suppose there will be a transitional arrangement. During that transition, we would have to look to see how Aston Martin could recertify under a non-VCA approval structure.”
The firm is currently building a plant in St Athan, Vale of Glamorgan and has active plants in Gaydon and Warwickshire.
In a tweet, Welsh Economy Secretary Ken Skates responded:
As we have repeatedly said, no deal would be a disastrous outcome for Wales’ economy, these comments only serve to reinforce this. https://t.co/ERHszMMWyz
— Ken Skates (@wgcs_economy) November 14, 2017
New cars built in the UK are tested by the Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA), whose approval means they can be sold across the EU.
But manufacturers are warning that this set-up will cease if Brexit happens without a deal.
Mr Wilson told the Commons’ Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee that Aston Martin faces ‘quite a stark picture’ if it needs to obtain certification elsewhere because VCA type-approval is not accepted by the EU.
“We need to make sure that that type-approval carries over, it has validity and it has recognition and it has the equivalence that it has today.”
“Otherwise, there are significant costs involved for us. Not only in resourcing to another type-approval … but also the semi-catastrophic effect of having to stop production because we only produce cars in the UK.”
Mike Hawes, chief executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, told the committee that car makers may struggle if they are forced to obtain type-approval elsewhere in order to continue selling in the EU.
“When you reapply under this new authority, you have to meet all the changes to regulation that have evolved from when you first got that vehicle certification.”
“It may be that regulation has changed to such an extent that you could not pass that regulatory framework. “