Engineering student looking at automotive equipment


Automotive Engineering (with Foundation Year)

This course is open for applications.

About this course

Entry year:
Course code:
Tariff points:
Engineering Design and Mathematics
Four years full-time; five years sandwich
Full-time; sandwich
Programme leader:
Dr Maryam Atoofi
Key fact:
Learn about industry through factory visits and professional briefings, and test your designs, using our state-of-the-art automotive simulator.

Page last updated 22 September 2017


Why study BEng(Hons) Automotive Engineering?

The automotive industry is set for global growth over the next decade. Environmental challenges mean new vehicles must be cleaner and more efficient, while urbanisation is driving a need for better transport solutions. This will lead to increasing demand for professionals with the right knowledge and skills in automotive design and manufacture.

Why study our course?

Studying Automotive Engineering at UWE Bristol will help you develop a strong grounding in mathematics, design, manufacturing and mechanical engineering. As you progress, you will study automotive manufacturing, engine systems, vehicle dynamics, materials, structures and safety. Throughout the course, you will gain hands-on experience, testing designs for automotive projects using our facilities.

Real world experience

To give you the inside track on the industry, our teaching is informed by industry experts and we arrange factory visits and professional briefings from leading automotive organisations. With work placements ranging from product development, vehicle dynamics and design to manufacturing, you will gain experience to help you decide where to specialise on graduation. You will also be enabled to compete with UWE Racing, our multi-disciplinary student team, which achieves regular success at the annual Formula Student competition.

Where it can take you

On graduation, careers range from automotive design to manufacture and maintenance. There are opportunities to go into pioneering research on the next wave of green and sustainable transport technologies.

Depending on your second year results, you may have the opportunity to transfer to the four-year MEng Automotive Engineering course, which fully meets the academic requirements to become a Chartered Engineer with the Institution of Mechanical Engineers.

Watch: The learning and teaching experience

Accreditations and partnerships:



Foundation year (Year zero)

You will study the following compulsory modules:

  • Engineering Experimentation
  • Foundation Group Project
  • Foundation Mechanics
  • Foundation Maths, Algebra and Calculus
  • Introduction to Mechatronics.

You will study the Foundation year alongside students from our other Engineering and Maths courses, and therefore may be able to transfer to a course in one of these areas at the end of the Foundation year.

The normal expectation is that you must pass all Year zero modules before progressing to Year one.

Year one

You will study the following compulsory modules:

  • Stress and Dynamics
  • Engineering Mathematics
  • Design, Materials and Manufacturing
  • Fluid Dynamics
  • Energy and Thermodynamics.

Year two

You will study the following compulsory modules:

  • Automotive Technology
  • Design and Electromechanical Systems
  • Engineering Mathematics 2
  • Stress Analysis
  • Dynamics
  • Project Management.

Option to switch to the MEng Automotive Engineering, subject to satisfactory marks at the end of the second year.

Placement year

We recommend that you take this opportunity to complete a year-long placement in industry or research. However, this is not necessary and you will be able to enter the third year immediately after Year two.

Final year

You will study the following compulsory modules:

  • Dynamics and Structures
  • Computational Methods.

You will also study one of the following optional modules:

  • Business Environment
  • Industrial Placement.

In addition, you will choose one optional module from the following list:

  • Automotive Manufacturing
  • Motorsport Performance.

Finally, Year three will also include one of the following modules:

  • Individual Project BEng - if you wish to exit with a BEng
  • Individual Project MEng A - if you wish to continue with an MEng.

The University continually enhances our offer by responding to feedback from our students and other stakeholders, ensuring the curriculum is kept up to date and our graduates are equipped with the knowledge and skills they need for the real world. This may result in changes to the course. If changes to your course are approved, we will inform you.

Learning and Teaching

As well as a connected programme of lectures and tutorials, you will undertake experimental laboratory work, engineering fabrication, drawing and design, computing and application based mini-projects.

For more details, see our full glossary of learning and teaching terms.

Percentage of time spend in different learning activities, per year.

YearScheduled learning and teaching studyIndependent studyPlacement study% check


You will be assessed through a combination of examinations and assignments. Formal presentations will form part of the assessment for some modules.

For more details, see our full glossary of assessment terms.

Percentage of time spend in different assessment methods, per year.

YearWritten exam assessmentCoursework assessmentPractical exam assessment% check


Professional accreditation

The Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) has awarded accreditation to this course. If you complete an IMechE accredited degree you will be deemed to have met part or all of the academic requirements for registration as a Chartered or Incorporated Engineer, putting you in a strong position to move on to achieve professional engineering status after a period of initial professional development in industry. This accreditation underlines the strong emphasis that UWE Bristol places on employability.


Students who complete a work placement are more likely to graduate with a better degree and obtain higher quality work on graduation. So, as well as helping hone your professional skills, industry knowledge and network, a placement will make you highly employable on graduation.

On a work placement, you will be able to apply your engineering knowledge at a choice of stages in the automotive industry. Past students have completed placements with Prodrive, Nissan, JCB and Vauxhall, as well as smaller dynamic companies in and around the region. Work with these can range from product development, vehicle dynamics and design, to manufacturing.

Study facilities

You will apply what you've learnt and develop vital professional skills, using the latest modelling and simulation software and equipment. As well as helping you develop the practical skills demanded by employers, these facilities will enable you to assess performance before concepts are built. Here, you will test:

  • designs on our state-of-the-art driving simulator that utilises a Formula One monocoque and a wrap-around screen and can be programmed to test concepts on any car type and test-drive them on a range of terrains
  • fuelling and ignition systems on our dedicated motorcycle rolling road.

Find out more about the facilities and resources UWE Bristol has to offer.

Learn from industry

We have strong relationships with IMechE and the motorsports industry and arrange regular talks with professionals from organisations, such as McLaren, Triumph and Jaguar Land Rover.

You will see automotive engineering in action at a range of facilities. Past trips have included destinations such as Castle Combe, Jaguar Land Rover's manufacturing facility and Nissan's technical R&D centre. We also organise an annual student trip to the Autosport International show.

Compete and learn

We encourage students to get involved in national competitions and initiatives to boost their skills and experience. Our UWE Racing student team represents disciplines across UWE Bristol. Reflecting the real world, the team work on, not only on the design and engineering, but also the business, marketing and costing of their race car as well. This has led them to achieve considerable success in IMechE's annual Formula Student competition.

Showcase your work

Many of our final year students exhibit their work to employers and public at our annual Environment and Technology degree show.


Careers / Further study

On graduation, you will be able to access a wide range of careers for engineers with strong analytical and problem solving skills. Areas include automotive research and development, design and manufacture. With green transport technologies being a focus of future transport developments, opportunities for eco-minded automotive engineers are predicted to increase.

At UWE Bristol, there are opportunities to become a graduate tutor. You will also be able to get involved in world-leading research in our Centre for Transport and Society and Centre for Sustainable Planning and Environments.

Award-winning Careers Service

Our award-winning careers service will help you develop your employment potential through career coaching, a vacancy service for internships, placements, jobs, global opportunities, volunteering and community activity, plus support for entrepreneurial activity and access to employer events.

Creating employable students

UWE Bristol places strong emphasis on employability and skills development at every level. Through work placements, volunteering, study abroad and initiatives nurturing talent and innovation, you will have opportunities to gain valuable real world experience, allowing you to graduate with diverse career opportunities and a competitive place in the job market.

Visit our Employability pages to find out about careers, employers, real world experience and what our students are doing six months after graduating.

Useful links


Indicative Additional Costs

FeesAmount (£)
Additional Course Costs - Full Time - Home/EU - Indicative Maximum Cost Per year150

Full time course

FeesAmount (£)
International-Full Time-Annual (Per Year) Fee12750
International-Full Time-Module Fee (15 Credit)1594

Full time course with placement year

FeesAmount (£)
International-Sandwich-Annual (Per Year) Fee12750
International-Sandwich-Full Annual Fee Following Placement Year12750
International-Sandwich-Module Fee (15 Credit)1594
International-Sandwich-Placement Year Fee1594
International-Sandwich-Reduced Annual Fee Following Placement Year11156

Supplementary fee information

The additional costs listed are those you could reasonably expect to incur during your studies and are for items not covered by the standard tuition fee. These could be materials, text books, travel, clothing, software or printing.

Further information about fees and funding.


Typical offers

  • Tariff points: 88
  • GCSE: For all applicants, Grade C/4 or above in English Language and Grade B/5 or above in Mathematics or equivalent. Please note the University does not accept Level 2 Key Skills, Functional Skills or Certificates in Adult Numeracy and Literacy as suitable alternatives to GCSEs.
  • A-level subjects: No specific subjects required. Points from General Studies and AS-Level subjects (not taken onto full A-Level) can be included towards overall tariff. You must have a minimum of one A-Level.
  • EDEXCEL (BTEC) Diploma: No specific subjects required.
  • Access: Achievement of the Access to HE Diploma; no specific subjects required.
  • Baccalaureate IB: No specific subjects required.

Entry requirements

The 'Typical offers' information above is only for full-time students entering the foundation year.

We are happy to consider your application if you have a mixture of A-Levels and BTEC qualifications.

We also welcome applications from highly motivated students who do not meet the usual entrance requirements given above, so we will consider you if you have gained equivalent knowledge and skills from substantial relevant work or other experience.

If you expect to achieve a higher tariff score, you may also be interested in our BEng(Hons) Automotive Engineering course.

UWE Bristol's International College

If you are an international student and do not meet the academic or English language requirements to study this course, you can qualify by completing preparatory study at our International College.

Please read the general information about entry requirements.

How to apply

Please see the general information about applications.

For further information


UWE Main Campus

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