A new sports car, a fourth Range Rover, a BMW 3-Series rival and an
executive estate, plus new factories in China, exciting engines and a
return of focus to innovation... Under Tata control, Jaguar Land Rover
will be more ambitious, says top boss Carl-Peter Forster. The man in
charge of making it happen is Ralf Speth, and he told us it’s time to
put the pedal to the metal!
TO READ THE FULL STORY ON JAGUAR'S NEW F-TYPE, DON"T MISS ISSUE 1,117 OF AUTO EXPRESS, ON SALE WEDNESDAY 2nd JUNE
The F-Type was first seen in the form of the XK180 concept back in 1998,
but the project has been constantly delayed as the company struggled
with its finances. But now, thanks to the promise of £1bn of investment
every year for the next five years by new Indian owner Tata, a
driver-focused sports car is imminent.
Despite the good news about Jaguar Land Rover’s investment in new
product and advanced technology, Tata boss Carl-Peter Forster believes
the firm remains committed to closing one of its UK factories.
Put simply, Forster says “It is much better for a car company to have one large factory, than two small ones.”
Currently, Jaguar Land Rover is reviewing the future of its two West Midlands plants in Solihull and Castle Bromwich. An announcement about the future of the locations is due this summer.
Meanwhile, JLR has confirmed it will open a new plant in China within the next two years. With a production target of around 30,000 units per year, the factory is set to build Defender, Discovery and Freelander models from UK-supplied kits. A similar set-up is also planned for India.
“This move isn’t about taking volume out of the UK,” said Forster. “It’s about strengthening business in emerging markets.”