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Jaguar Land Rover to build cars in China

Sun, 09 Sep 2012

Jaguar Land Rover has revealed it is going to build cars in China, starting with either the Freelander 2 or Evoque.

Jaguar Land Rover has revealed that it going to build cars outside the UK for the first time (as opposed to re-assembling Freelander 2 CKD kits as it does in India) in a plant just north of Shanghai.

As this is China, official permission from the Chinese government is required, but with the joint venture between Chery and JLR now official its seems unlikely to be a problem as JLR will already have agreed to Chery producing JLR cars with Chery badges on.

But, at least for now, JLR won’t be producing its star cars with aluminium underpinnings, like the 2013 Range Rover, but are likely to be looking at the Freelander 2 or Range Rover Evoque, and maybe the current Jaguar XF, as the starting point.

All of which makes perfect sense for Jaguar to compete in China – with its big import tariffs, especially for big-engined cars – and it also makes sense that JLR’s ‘Halo’ cars are still perceived as ‘British’ and exclusive which, if the Land Rover and XJ continue to be built just in the UK, they will be.

Expansion of production outside the UK doesn’t seem to be an imminent threat to UK manufacturing, with JLR also revealing they’ve invested £370 million to upgrade their production facilities in Solihull to deal with demands the new Range Rover brings.

Still, even if UK production is safe and heavily invested in by JLR, their increasing sales and success will probably see both Jaguars and Land Rovers being produced in China, India, Brazil, Russia and even Saudi Arabia in the future.

By Cars UK