Jaguar Land Rover have announced that the company will be investing plenty of money in order to design and build a wide range of electric vehicles at its Castle Bromwich plant in Birmingham, despite the uncertainty surrounding the United Kingdom due to Brexit.
Jaguar Land Rover Chief Executive, Ralf Speth, said that “The future of mobility is electric and as a visionary British company, we are committed to making our next generation of zero-emission vehicles in the UK.”
The company announced this during a press conference on Friday, assuring the public that this decision will help to ensure job security of around 2,700 workers at the plant in Birmingham.
This announcement comes as a surprise after the company had stated in January that it will be discharging over 4,500 workers, most of them in the UK. The announcement in January was not seen as a major shock, as it would have followed the 1,500 jobs that were lost in 2018.
The company plans to initially construct an electric version of the extremely popular Jaguar XJ. Whilst Jaguar Land Rover has not announced when it will exactly launch this new version of the luxurious car, the company has stated that the new model of the Jaguar XJ will completely replace the previous petrol and diesel variants, with such older models being available in the market since 1968.
The news that a local car company is making strides in the new electric car industry is crucial to the UK, especially now that it is set to leave the European Union by the end of October. The UK’s car industry is filled with foreign-owned brands, and so this will be a breath of fresh air for UK residents that might not be willing to pay more due to the exit from the EU.
Professor Speth told BBC during an interview, that the government “has to govern the process” of increasing the amount of charging points for electric cars, due to the industry’s booming demand for such innovative vehicles.
This announcement comes after there was a statistic published by The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders indicating a fall in sales of low emission cars in the United Kingdom for the first time in two years on Thursday.
In contrast to this, the UK government said that its main focus was to switch to zero emission car models, and that this focus was turning out to be a success, with registrations of electric vehicles going up over 60% in 2019 when compared to the same timeframe in 2018.
Such a decision to invest in the UK by Jaguar Land Rover seems to contradict the previous warnings that the company put out which indicated that Brexit would damage the potential investments coming into the UK.
Industry expert, David Bailey, a business economics professor at Birmingham Business School, said that Jaguar Land Rover could not wait to see Brexit’s outcome, as the firm required an update in its range of vehicles, and the firm needed to update the Castle Bromwich plant, or else it would “effectively be dead”.
Several other car companies seem to be backing out of the chance to manufacture cars in the UK due to its uncertain future, but Jaguar Land Rover seem to be confident that if Brexit is to be finalised, then it would offer a good chance for the firm to penetrate the electric car industry.