Over the last several blogs we have been reporting on JLR’s bold plan to double their UK output, become a world leader in Electric Vehicle development and create 10,000 new jobs in the process. In November, CEO Ralf Speth pitched a proposal to the Coventry city council. At the time of this writing, the Coventry Telegraph is reporting that a decision on the plan is imminent and could come as early as this Thursday.
One central component of the plan is for JLR to build a manufacturing site for Electric Vehicle (EV) batteries. If the site’s approval goes through, that will set the ball in motion for other components of the plan to fall into place, such as the relocation of Jaguar I-Pace production back to JLR’s home city rather than in Austria, where they are built in collaboration with Austrian carmaker Steyr-Puch.
According to the Telegraph, the councilors have recommended approval of the application to build the battery site, though no “official” approval has been made. Just the battery site alone will create hundred if not thousands of jobs in the area, both directly and also indirectly through suppliers in a variety of manufacturing-related sectors.
The Jaguar I-Pace is expected to be on the road in two years. While I have not heard anything specific about plans to release an all-electric Land Rover, it is almost certain that the current trends in EVs and other high-tech vehicles are leading in that direction. That is not a nuance likely to be lost on JLR, as they seek to outpace the foreign competition in electric and smart driving technologies.
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