Friday, 5 July 2019

Jaguar’s next EV will be an electric



Jaguar Land Rover said on Friday that it will invest hundreds of millions of pounds in electric vehicle production at its Castle Bromwich plant in Birmingham.
An electric version of the Jaguar XJ will be the first car produced at the plant.
The company said that the move will help secure the jobs of up to 2,700 workers at the factory — even after it in January announced that it would be cutting 4,500 jobs.
“The announcement is the next significant step in delivering on the company’s commitment to offer customers electrified options for all new Jaguar and Land Rover models from 2020,” the company said in a statement.
The changes made to the factory to prepare it for production of electric vehicles will be “the most significant in the plant’s history,” it said.
Jaguar Land Rover CEO Ralf Speth said his company was committed to making the “next generation” of zero-emission vehicles in the UK.
Though around 90% of the vehicles it produces are still powered by diesel, the company announced in 2017 that it would make only electric or hybrid cars from 2020.
Production of the current XJ, the company’s flagship executive saloon, recently came to an end at the Castle Bromwich plant.
The XJ is used by business leaders and politicians, including prime minister Theresa May and several government ministers.
In addition to the new all-electric XJ, the factory will continue to produce the XE, XF and F-Type models.
Speth had previously issued stark Brexit warnings, saying that a hard Brexit would cost Jaguar Land Rover more than £1.2bn a year, and that his company needed more certainty before it made new investment commitments.
In January, junior business minister Richard Harrington said he was afraid that Jaguar Land Rover would be forced to close if the UK left the EU without a deal.
January’s 4,500 job losses were expected to come from the company’s 40,000-strong UK workforce, and followed 1,500 job cuts in 2018.
Workers union Unite on Friday said the Birmingham investment decision was a “fantastic boost” to the troubled UK car industry.

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