Jaguar Land Rover will spend £15 billion ($18.7 billion) over the next five years on electric vehicles and self-driving features as part of its effort to phase out combustion engines and catch up with rivals.
According to Tata Motors Ltd., the proposal involves converting JLR's UK Halewood factory to an all-electric facility, with the first medium-sized battery Range Rover vehicle coming in 2025. The statement is the automaker's first defined strategy, coming two years after early EV investments and the intention to relaunch Jaguar as an electric-only brand.
"We are stepping into an incredibly exciting new electric era for JLR as a modern luxury business," said JLR Chief Executive Officer Adrian Mardell in a statement. The high-end carmaker, which has battled more than competitors with supply-chain issues, intends to be net-cash flow positive by the fiscal year 2025 and achieve "double-digit" profitability before interest and taxes by 2026.
JLR has little experience building EVs, with Magna International Inc in Austria producing its lone completely electric car, the I-Pace SUV. Mercedes-Benz AG unveiled the about €200,000 ($219,140) Maybach EQS SUV this week at the Shanghai auto show, joining BMW AG and Porsche AG in expanding its battery choices.
According to JLR, reservations for an electric version of its full-size Range Rover will begin towards the end of the year. The decision to manufacture important models in the UK is a godsend for the ailing sector, which has suffered a number of setbacks in the run-up to and following Brexit.
Jaguar, which has been plagued by declining sales, will launch the first of three new electric vehicles in 2024, including a four-door grand tourer built in the UK at JLR's Solihull facility. The automobile will be priced at £100,000 and will have a driving range of up to 700 kilometers (430 miles).
The company announced plans to retool its present engine production plant in Wolverhampton to create electric drive units and battery packs for future models. It will also keep the metal stamping operations at its Castle Bromwich complex, however, the company said it "continues to explore options" for the rest of the property. At Castle Bromwich, JLR presently manufactures Jaguar sedans as well as the F-Type sports vehicle.
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