Jaguar Land Rover has announced that it will open a new production facility in Slovakia.
A statement released by JLR states that the company, owned by Indian industrial giant Tata, has signed a letter of intent with the Slovakian government for the potential development of the factory in the city Nitra, in the west of the country.
Over the last five years, JLR has spent £11 billion on new model development and captial expenditure, investing heavily in its UK facilities at Castle Bromwich, Halewood and Solihull. It also opened a new engine plant, creating 1,400 of the 20,000 jobs that have been added. JLR’s global workforce now stands at 36,000.
The Slovakian factory will add additional output of up to 300,000 units per year, rather than replace any existing facility. JLR already has factories in China and India, is building one in Brazil and plans to contract some production to Magna Steyr in Austria.
JLR Chief Executive Officer, Dr Ralf Speth, said: “The expansion of our business globally is essential to support its long-term, resilient growth. As well as creating additional capacity, it allows us to invest in the development of more new vehicles and technologies which supports jobs in the UK.
“With its established premium automotive industry, Slovakia is an attractive potential development opportunity for us. The new factory will complement our existing facilities in the UK, China, India and the one under construction in Brazil.”
A feasibility study will be completed by the end of this year, and the first cars are expected to roll off the production line in 2018.
Robert Fico, Prime Minister of Slovakia, said: “We are committed to developing Slovakia’s premium automotive industry and, should we be successful, this investment would represent a significant step forward in achieving this. It would provide a boost to our country’s wider industrial strategy as well as benefitting the European Union as a whole.”
Slovakia recently amended its laws to make large-scale inward investments such as JLR’s easier. The company was also considering sites in the United States, Mexico and elsewhere in Europe, believed to be Poland.
It is thought the cars most likely to be built in Slovakia are the upcoming Land Rover Discovery 5 and next-generation Land Rover Defender.
For more information click here
By Only Motors