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Jaguar Land Rover announces electric car investment

July 5, 2019

 

 

Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) is investing hundreds of millions of pounds to build a range of electric vehicles at its Castle Bromwich plant in Birmingham.

 

Initially the plant will produce an electric version of the Jaguar XJ.

JLR says the move will help secure the jobs of 2,700 workers at the plant.

 

The news follows January's announcement, when the firm said it would cut 4,500 jobs, with the majority coming from the UK. That followed 1,500 jobs lost in 2018.

 

JLR has not announced when it will launch the battery version of the XJ, but it will replace the petrol and diesel versions which have been made since 1968.

 

The company's chief executive, Professor Ralph Speth, called on the government to put more effort into providing charging points for electric cars.

 

"The current charging infrastructure is not really sufficient to cover the country, nor the hotspots of the cities," he said in an interview with the BBC.

"The government has to govern the process," he added.

 

He added that without the new investment the Castle Bromwich plant would "effectively be dead".

 

The plant also produces the Jaguar XF, XE and F-Type.

 

Business Secretary Greg Clark said: "Today's announcement is a vote of confidence in the UK automotive industry - protecting thousands of skilled jobs.

 

"It reflects our determination for the UK to be at the forefront of the development and manufacturing of the next generation of electric vehicles."

 

Investment in the UK car industry fell 47% last year from 2017 and the country is attracting a tiny fraction of the global investment in electric cars.

 

VW alone is investing £70bn in Europe, the US and China.

 

A no-deal Brexit would see new tariffs imposed on components and parts moving between the EU and the UK.

 

Vauxhall's parent company said that without a deal it would not make the next generation Astra at Ellesmere Port.

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