It said: "Following restructuring in the market, productivity has returned to form, with year-to-date growth of almost a quarter at 23.6%. Volumes have also been driven by rising demand from operators in the UK – and increasingly across Europe too."
While the production increase in the first quarter was built mainly on growth in the UK market, April saw a 50.1% surge in manufacture for export. The SMMT said: "This is evidence that the UK is taking advantage of a rallying European market, with CV registrations across the EU having risen 13% so far this year."
Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, added: "These figures are further evidence that commercial vehicle manufacturing in the UK has turned a corner after a period of restructuring," said . "April's significant rise in exports is particularly encouraging, as the industry capitalises on increasing demand for vans, trucks and buses across Europe."
Meanwhile, the UK surpassed the 500,000 milestone for car production this April, with 530,505 new cars built so far this year, according to the SMMT.
Production for the domestic market is up 19.4% in the first four months of the year.
Hawes said, "UK car production has escalated in recent years and continues to perform steadily in 2015. Manufacturers across the country are poised to see yet more growth following multi billion pound investments and, providing global markets perform well, output is on track to reach record levels in the next few years."