December 2015

Stepping up

Jaguar Land Rover's upcoming manufacturing facility in Slovakia is a testament of the iconic automotive manufacturer's commitment to produce more lightweight vehicles and up its global auto manufacturing presence

Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) has become the first British carmaker to sign an agreement with the Government of Slovak Republic to set up a manufacturing facility in Slovakia. This marks another milestone in the British auto giant’s efforts to increase its international manufacturing presence.

Over the last year, JLR has made significant progress in this direction; first with a new joint venture in China and then with the construction of a local manufacturing plant in Brazil.

The construction of the plant in the city of Nitra will begin in 2016 and is estimated to cost £1 billion. Once fully functional, the plant will employ around 2,800 people. “The new factory will complement our existing facilities in the UK, China, India and Brazil. It marks the next step in the company’s strategy to become a truly global business,” says Dr Ralf Speth, chief executive officer, Jaguar Land Rover. The plant will deliver on the company’s commitment to produce more lightweight vehicles by manufacturing a range of all-new aluminium vehicles. With an initial capacity of 150,000 vehicles, the production lines of the factory will see the roll out of the first cars in late 2018.

Commenting on the agreement, Robert Fico, Prime Minister of Slovakia, said, “We are glad that Jaguar Land Rover has chosen Slovakia for its new world-class manufacturing facility. The marriage of Slovak craftsmanship and British engineering holds great promise.”

Slovakia has an established premium automotive sector, which represents 43 percent of the country’s overall industry. It has more than 300 suppliers in close proximity and an excellent logistics infrastructure. Over the past five years, JLR has employed more than 20,000 people taking its workforce to more than 37,000 and invested more than £11 billion in new product creation and capital expenditure.

The creation of new international plants will allow JLR to offer its customers exciting new models, safeguard itself against currency fluctuations and create a globally competitive business.