Car production edged ahead last month but commercial vehicle manufacturing slumped.
A total of 129,049 cars were produced in the UK in January 2013 - 1.2% up on the January 2012 figure, the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) said.
The car total performance last month was particularly notable as production had soared 15.6% in January 2012 compared with January 2011.
Also, last month's result was achieved despite some manufacturers extending their festive breaks into January.
Commercial vehicle (CV) production, however, fell 20.5% last month to 7,822. The SMMT warned that CV falls can be expected throughout 2013 as Ford scales backs its manufacturing.