Jaguar Land Rover has begun production the XF saloon in India, using components supplied by its Castle Browmich plant in Birmingham. The XF will be built alongside the Freelander at the Indian facility in Pune, which has been produced there since May 2011.
It’s yet another example of JLR’s plans to capitalise on the growth in car sales in emerging markets. A joint venture deal with Chinese manufacturer Chery, signed in March 2012, is already in place to build Jaguar, Land Rover and joint venture-branded cars in China and sell the vehicles locally. Even without this venture, JLR sold 42,000 cars in China in 2011, which increased to 71,940 in 2012 – making China its largest single market.
JLR has also announced its intentions to build a production facility in Saudi Arabia, which would include its own aluminium foundry and press shop to supply the ever-increasing need for the lightweight metal in new cars like the Range Rover and Jaguar XJ.
Set to begin churning out an undisclosed Land Rover model in two years time, the new plant will help boost sales in the Middle East but also secure a stable and well-priced source of aluminium for future models.