Jaguar Land Rover is a company that is owned by the huge Indian motor and steel firm Tata Group. The Indian-owned firm is based in Coventry, in the heart of Britain’s West Midlands region, and was bought from its previous owners, the American automotive giant Ford, back in 2008.
The company has made significant investments to secure the future of the Jaguar and Land Rover vehicles, so that they can still remain a British-designed, developed and built brand.
But with increasing numbers of vehicles exported to other countries, the group is looking for ways to increase production of current and future models abroad whilst keeping costs down.
It was recently reported in the Birmingham Mail newspaper that the company has been entertaining the idea of setting up a production line in Saudi Arabia, a country that is in the heart of Western Asia.
Jaguar Land Rover sees growing numbers of sales abroad
According to Saudi Arabia’s minister of commerce and industry, Tawfiq bin Fawzan Al Rabiah, the owners of those iconic British motoring brands have been seriously considering plans for a manufacturing plant in the Gulf state which would see cars such as the Range Rover Sport and the Jaguar F-Type, as well as future models, being produced there.
It is no secret that Jaguar Land Rover exports vast amounts of cars produced in the West Midlands to countries such as China, India and Brazil, and has even stated that 19% of all cars built and sold by JLR have been delivered to customers in such countries.
David Bailey, an industry expert, has gone on record to state that if a significant investment were made in Saudi Arabian production facilities for Jaguar Land Rover cars, it would be a mutually beneficial decision as the cost of raw materials such as aluminium is cheap in the Gulf state, and the suppliers of those raw materials would obviously see a rise in their sales too, boosting the Saudi economy.
The effects on British manufacturing
Jaguar Land Rover have been keen to stress that even though manufacturing facilities are being built or considered in foreign countries, it is still going to keep manufacturing cars under the Jaguar and Land Rover marques in the United Kingdom.
This is obviously good news for the British economy, as it struggles to rebuild itself following two recessions and the global economic downturn from the beginning of the 21st century. It’s also great news for any Land Rover dealer, as it means that they’ll still be in a job!
Other foreign JLR investments that are in the pipeline
Although there has been no official announcement from either Jaguar Land Rover or the Tata Group over the reports that talks have been made with Saudi officials, we do know that JLR is certainly committed to cashing in on extra sales overseas.
There is currently a new production line being built in Changshu, China, as part of a joint agreement with the Chery Automobile Company, and in December 2013 Jaguar Land Rover had confirmed in an official press release that it is going to be investing £240 million in a new manufacturing facility in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.