Skip advert
Advertisement

JLR boss stops short of denying PSA takeover rumours

Leaked documents suggest PSA could buy JLR. Boss Dr Ralf Speth says he has not discussed a sale but doesn't deny moves are afoot

Land Rover Discovery - off-road

Jaguar Land Rover boss Dr Ralf Speth has insisted that he has not discussed any sale of his company to PSA with the French giant’s chief Carlos Tavares - but he has stopped short of quashing increasing speculation that the British brands could soon face a change of ownership.

Reports last week suggested that PSA is keen to acquire the Jaguar and Land Rover brands from existing owner Tata, in a bid to widen its portfolio to include more premium vehicles. Speaking at the Financial Times Future of the Car Summit, Jaguar Land Rover boss Dr Ralf Speth said that he “couldn’t confirm discussions” - but he declined to deny that any talks had taken place.

Advertisement - Article continues below

“I meet Carlos Tavares at an ACEA [European car manufacturer’s association] meeting,” Speth said, “but we didn’t have any discussion about ownership.”

When asked more directly if he knew of any talks between PSA and Tata, Speth replied, “There are rumours, but I cannot really confirm any of these discussions.”

The story first broke when a leaked “post-sale integration document”, seen by Press Association (PA), highlighted the benefits of a union between the two companies, with insiders at JLR telling PA that “things are moving quickly behind closed doors". The source added: "Just look at how close the two firms are in the UK - the two head offices in Coventry and Gaydon are just 25 miles apart and both firms make cars in the UK.

Skip advert
Advertisement
Skip advert
Advertisement - Article continues below

A statement from PSA said the company was in “no hurry” to buy JLR, but that "If an opportunity comes, like Opel (Vauxhall), we will consider it." PSA, which is 13.68 per cent owned by the French Government, has had significant success since buying Opel/Vauxhall from General Motors, with Opel/Vauxhall bringing in an €859 million profit in 2018, compared with the €257 million loss it made in 2016 when it was owned by General Motors.

JLR’s parent company, Tata Motors, however, told PA that: "there was no truth to rumours that Tata Motors is looking to divest its stake in JLR".

Suggestions that Jaguar Land Rover could be sold follow the firm posting a £273-million loss in the final quarter of 2018, and downgrading the value of assets by £3.1 billion. The recent success of the electric Jaguar I-Pace and all-new Range Rover Evoque have done much to lift JLR’s profile, as has the introduction of more plug-in hybrid and mild hybrid models, but they come off the back of a downturn in the company’s key Chinese market, and slow-selling models like the Jaguar XE and Land Rover Discovery.

Would a takeover by PSA be good for JLR? Have your say in the comments...

Skip advert
Advertisement
Editor-at-large

John started journalism reporting on motorsport – specifically rallying, which he had followed avidly since he was a boy. After a stint as editor of weekly motorsport bible Autosport, he moved across to testing road cars. He’s now been reviewing cars and writing news stories about them for almost 20 years.

Skip advert
Advertisement

Recommended

Best cars to modify - our top options for DIY car mods
Best cars to modify - header image
Best cars & vans

Best cars to modify - our top options for DIY car mods

If you have the itch for aftermarket parts and making your ride unique, these are the best cars to go for
13 May 2024
10 surprising things made by car companies, that aren't cars
Things made by car manufacturers - header
Features

10 surprising things made by car companies, that aren't cars

The world’s biggest auto manufacturers have many strings to their bows...
6 May 2024
New facelifted Citroen Berlingo, Dispatch and Relay vans all available to order now
Citroen Berlingo, Dispatch and Relay vans
News

New facelifted Citroen Berlingo, Dispatch and Relay vans all available to order now

The first examples of the three facelifted vans are due to arrive in April
19 Mar 2024
Best new cars coming in 2024
Best new cars coming in 2024 - header image
Best cars & vans

Best new cars coming in 2024

There are some big new models from the likes of BMW, Citroen, Dacia, Ford, MINI, Skoda and more on the way in 2024
12 Mar 2024

Most Popular

Skoda Scala vs Citroen C4 2024 twin test: which is the best-value family hatchback?
Skoda Scala and Citroen C4 - front tracking
Car group tests

Skoda Scala vs Citroen C4 2024 twin test: which is the best-value family hatchback?

The revised Skoda Scala takes on Citroen’s C4 in the battle to be the best-value family hatchback
18 May 2024
Cheap EV charging comes to public chargepoints via new ‘Plunge Pricing’ app
Octopus Energy’s Electroverse
News

Cheap EV charging comes to public chargepoints via new ‘Plunge Pricing’ app

Octopus’ ‘Plunge Pricing’ events promise to save electric car drivers an average of £6.50 per charge
17 May 2024
Car Deal of the Day: Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer Electric at an unbeatable £201 a month
Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer front cornering
News

Car Deal of the Day: Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer Electric at an unbeatable £201 a month

Our Deal of the Day selection for 18 May will appeal to those who want an all-electric family car that’s not a SUV
18 May 2024