Jaguar Land Rover signs deal with Austrian factory

Jaguar Land Rover has announced a manufacturing deal with Magna Steyr, which will build some upcoming JLR models at its factory in Graz, Austria.

JLR’s three UK factories at Halewood, Castle Bromwich and Solihull are understood to be running almost at full capacity. 12 new or revised models are being launched this year and next, including the Land Rover Discovery Sport and Jaguar XE we’ve already seen, the upcoming Jaguar F-Pace SUV, next-generation Land Rover Defender and Discovery 5.

To relieve pressure on its UK facilities JLR is looking abroad to set up a new factory, as part of a £3.6 billion programme of product development and expansion. Sites in Hungary and Poland are understood to be under consideration. Though such a move will inevitably prove controversial, building and operating the factory will be significantly easier and cheaper in Central or Eastern Europe than in the UK. JLR already has a factory in China and is building another in Brazil, both to produce cars for the local market.

It is thought the new factory would build the next Defender and possibly the Discovery 5. But that still leaves several upcoming models that need to built somewhere, which is where the deal with Magna Steyr comes in.

Magna Steyr is the biggest contract car manufacturer in the world, currently producing the Mercedes G-Wagen, Peugeot RCZ and Mini Countryman. It isn’t yet known which cars the firm will build for JLR, but they could include the Evoque convertible and a smaller version of F-Pace.

Of course, JLR is only following the lead of pretty much every other car manufacturer by looking beyond its home country to produce cars. Though it might matter to marque purists, the vast majority of buyers don’t give a second’s thought to where their car was built. Does it really matter that the BMW X5 is made in America, the Ford Mondeo in Spain, the Fiat 500 in Poland, the Kia Cee’d in Slovakia, etc etc etc? Not at all.

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By Only Motors

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