Jaguar to make crossover vehicle in Solihull, creating 1,300 jobs
Jaguar Land Rover is to manufacture a new “performance crossover” vehicle at its Solihull production plant. According to the announcement made at the Detroit Motor Show, together with a bid to extend its expertise in aluminium and lightweight technologies, the company will create 1,300 new jobs. These are in addition to the 1700 created in 2013 for the introduction of the Jaguar XE. The company’s headcount has doubled over the past few years to more than 32,000 globally, of which 30,500 are in the UK.
The Jaguar performance crossover, which the BBC reports will be called the Jaguar F-PACE, is set to go on sale in 2016, follows the Jaguar XE into the new plant-within-a-plant facilities at the Solihull factory. According to the firm, it also marks the start of a year that will see the manufacturer deliver 12 significant product actions in the next 12 months.
To support the introduction of its new aluminium and lightweight technologies Jaguar Land Rover has already invested £1.5 billion. Incorporating Europe’s largest aluminium body shop and final assembly hall – collectively the size of 22 football pitches, the new state-of-the-art facilities bring the Jaguar brand to Solihull for the first time, and continues to showcase the company’s pioneering leadership in aluminum vehicle construction which dates back to 2003 with the introduction of the seventh generation Jaguar XJ.
Jaguar Land Rover’s Solihull plant builds vehicles such as the Range Rover, Range Rover Sport, Land Rover Discovery and is home to the iconic Defender. Most recently, the site has welcomed the first Jaguar in its history, with the introduction of the new Jaguar XE, which begins production in the Spring.
Jaguar Land Rover CEO Dr. Ralf Speth said: “[These] announcements once again demonstrate our commitment to the UK and the advancement of a high-tech, high skilled, manufacturing-led economy. Jaguar Land Rover is committed to delivering more great products. It is that innovation and relentless quest for new technologies that sets our products apart. We want to offer customers greater choice, with even more exciting vehicles, crafted with that special British flair. We want to improve the quality of life for our customers and for our own employees, creating opportunities for more people to be part of the Jaguar Land Rover experience.”
In 2014 Jaguar Land Rover opened its first ever overseas manufacturing facility in Changshu, China and started construction of its second, in Brazil.