5.7.2019Jaguar Land Rover confirms EV investment
Jaguiar Land Rover has confirmed that it will build a new range of electric and electrified vehicles at its Castle Bromwich plant - the first of which will be a pure-electric replacement for the Jaguar XJ flagship saloon.
As the final model from the current XJ's run rolls off the production line today (Friday 5th July), Jaguar Land Rover has announced the investment, which will see millions pumped into the plant and the safeguarding of thousands of jobs.
The group is bringing a number of operations to the Midlands, strengthening what has always been its base for both Jaguar and Land Rover brands.
Supporting the new electric-focused factory at Castle Bromwich will be the previously confirmed Battery Assembly Centre at Hams Hall, and Electric Drive Unit production base at the Wolverhampton Engine Manufacturing Centre.
Work to transform Castle Bromwich into an electrified vehicle plant will begin later this month, with systems set to go in that support JLR's next-generation Modular Longitudinal Architecture platform, which has been designed to fit electric and hybrid powertrains as well as petrol and diesel systems.
JLR has previously committed to offering electric or electrified versions of all its models by the end of 2020. Jaguar already has the multi-award winning I-Pace - plus the next-generation XJ confirmed - while Land Rover has plug-in hybrid versions of its Range Rover and Range Rover Sport, and the Range Rover Evoque will get a plug-in hybrid powertrain soon.
Ralf Speth, Jaguar Land Rover CEO, said: "The future of mobility is electric and, as a visionary British company, we are committed to making our next generation of zero-emission vehicles in the UK.
"We are co-locating our electric vehicle manufacture, electronic drive units and battery assembly to create a powerhouse of electrification in the Midlands.
"Convenience and affordability are the two key enablers to drive the uptake of electric vehicles to the levels that we all need. Charging should be as easy as re-fuelling a conventional vehicle.
"Affordability will only be achieved if we make batteries here in the UK, close to vehicle production, to avoid the cost and safety risk of importing from abroad. The UK has the raw materials, scientific research in our universities and an existing supplier base to put the UK at the leading edge of mobility and job creation."
With the investment announcement, JLR is calling on other companies and government to work together to bring giga-scale battery production in the UK. It looks to build on the UK Battery Industrialisation Centre and the government's Faraday Challenge, which aims to develop next generation battery technology to create smaller, denser, cheaper batteries.