Manganese Bronze, the maker of London's traditional black cabs, said it had failed to make a profit in 2011 and could miss market expectations for 2012, blaming deteriorating economic conditions and the delay of an Azerbaijan order.

The company said trading had continued to be impacted by the weakening UK economy while the unresolved euro zone sovereign debt crisis and its potential impact on banks had undermined confidence within the global banking community and made it more difficult to secure finance for international trade.

Manganese Bronze said an order of 500 vehicles from Azerbaijan which was originally due to be shipped in October had been delayed until January 30.

The overall impact of lower UK sales and the delayed fulfilment of the Azerbaijan order will prevent the group from achieving a profitable result for the year ended December 31, the company said in a statement Monday.

Whilst a proportion of this shortfall should be recovered when the delayed Azerbaijan sales are recorded in 2012, any continued softening of global economic conditions would mean the group is likely to fall short of meeting expectations for the current year.

UK sales were down 9.1 percent at 1,502 vehicles in 2011 compared to 2010, while in the fourth quarter of last year alone sales dropped 14.6 percent to 328 vehicles.

(Reporting by Philip Baillie; Editing by Matt Scuffham)