Jaguar Land Rover to produce electric vehicles in UK
Written by Hannah McGrath
Jaguar Land Rover has announced plans to produce its new range of electric vehicles (EVs) in the UK, as the car making giant becomes to the latest to shift to green vehicle technology.
The company said the decision to make the fully electrified Jaguar XJ model at its manufacturing plant in Castle Bromwich marked the next phase in its strategy to offer EVS across all new models of Jaguar and Land Rover from 2020.
The company said the move would safeguard “thousands of jobs” and added its voice to calls for a giga-scale battery production plant in the UK to “put the country at leading edge of electric mobility.”
Professor Ralf Speth, chief executive of Jaguar Land Rover, 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.”
The news was confirmed to workers at Castle Bromwich as production of the current XJ model came to an end.
The transformation of Castle Bromwich to become the UK’s first premium electrified vehicle plant will be the most significant in the plant’s history.
Later this month, work will begin to commence the installation of facilities and technologies required to support Jaguar Land Rover’s next-generation Modular Longitudinal Architecture (MLA).
This will enable flexible production of clean efficient diesel and petrol vehicles alongside full electric and hybrid models.
However, the car maker admitted that “increased consumer take-up remains a challenge” for the widespread adoption of hybrid and electric vehicles.
Dr Speth explained: “Convenience and affordability are the two key enablers to drive the uptake of electric vehicles to the levels that we all need.
He added: “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.”