JLR to shut Solihull plant for two weeks as sales slide

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Tom Morgan, Online Reviews Editor

Jaguar Land Rover has announced plans to shut its Solihull factory for two weeks later this month, following a significant decline in global sales in September.

The company had already begun adjusting the output of its factories in response to market demand, with 2000 workers at the Castle Bromwich factory responsible for the Jaguar XE, XF and XJ saloons moving to a three-day working week until after the Christmas period. The Solihull plant will shut for two weeks on 22 October, with no jobs affected by the closure.

“As part of the company’s continued strategy for profitable growth, Jaguar Land Rover is focused on achieving operational efficiencies and will align supply to reflect fluctuating demand globally as required,” a JLR spokesperson said. “The decision to introduce a two-week shutdown period later this month at Solihull is one example of actions we are taking to achieve this.

“Customer orders in the system will not be impacted and employees affected will be paid for the duration of the shutdown.”

Worldwide sales of 57,114 cars in September was a 12.3% decrease compared with the same month last year, despite what JLR calls “strong” demand for new luxury models such as the Range Rover Velar and the electric Jaguar I-Pace.

The Chinese market suffered the biggest decline, at a significant 46.2% – a slip the company blames on changes in import duty and continued trade tensions holding back consumer demand. European numbers also decreased by 4.7%.

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JLR’s UK sales fell by just 0.8% in September, bucking the industry-wide decline of 20.5%. Several factors can be attributed to the slump, including shrinking demand for diesel models, reduced interest in saloon cars and ongoing Brexit uncertainty.

Unite, the UK’s biggest union for car workers, said a “triple whammy” of Brexit uncertainty, government confusion over diesel and ministers’ half-hearted support for electric vehicles was threatening the future of the UK car industry.

“Government ministers’ trashing of diesel, despite the UK making some of the cleanest engines in the world, combined with their shambolic handling of Brexit, is damaging the UK car industry and the supply chain,” Unite national officer Des Quinn said. “Over the past decade, Jaguar Land Rover workers have worked tirelessly to turn the car maker’s fortunes around. Ministers now risk turning them and their colleagues in the supply chain from hero to zero.”

Jaguar Land Rover CEO Ralf Speth has previously condemned the lack of certainly in the market, saying that if the right Brexit deal is not secured, “tens of thousands” of jobs could go at the firm. The company currently employs 40,000 people across the UK, with many more linked through JLR’s supplier network.

The company has refused to rule out more permanent changes, saying it is “continuing to over-proportionally invest in new products and technologies and are committed to our UK plants, in which we have invested more than £4 billion since 2010, to future-proof manufacturing technologies to deliver new models.”

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TStag

The sales drop in China is

The sales drop in China is the biggest factor here. JLR will have to start making more models in China I suspect.

The Apprentice

#sigh# with JLR its always

#sigh# with JLR its always someone else’s fault. Brexit, leaves on the line, sun spots, Chinese losing their credit cards, etc, etc

In Norway there is a 2 year waiting list for the Hyundai EV SUV, its what happens when you make things sensibly priced.

scrap

The Apprentice wrote:

#sigh# with JLR its always someone else’s fault. Brexit, leaves on the line, sun spots, Chinese losing their credit cards, etc, etc

In Norway there is a 2 year waiting list for the Hyundai EV SUV, its what happens when you make things sensibly priced.

 

You are in denial. Brexit is a massive threat to UK car industry and it’s not just JLR who are saying so.

You are entitled to your opinion about Brexit, but Leavers are very bad at accepting the facts.

The single market revitalised car manufacturing in the UK – a cursory look at the figures will tell you that. Leaving will cause huge job losses.

lamcote

@the apprentice

“it’s what happens when you make things sensibly priced”

Absolutely agree, JLR are just not in the real world with their prices so they are far too vulnerable to external factors that affect the market, as we see happening now.

Bill Lyons

It’s all LR and no J

Aside from their over-reliance on diesel, it would help if they started making some Jaguars that people actually wanted to buy. The current range are utter dross.

scotty5

It’s always someone else’s fault.

By far the biggest factor here is China – 20% drop in sales and a general slump in worldwide sales. Home market is bucking the trend by only being 0.8% down yet they blame Brexit ?  Sad.

I’m not long back from holiday in Croatia. In all my 2 weeks there, I didn’t see a single JLR product. Don’t go blaming the diesel factor because lots of SUV’s are diesel…  and diesel is cheaper to buy than petrol i that part of the world.  If Merc, BMW and Audi can sell expensive diesel SUV’s over there, why can’t JLR? Perhaps JLR need to look at the product they sell rather than go blaming external factors.

TStag

The frustration with Brexit

The frustration with Brexit is that the pound has dropped and pushed up the cost of imported parts. The other problem is that the U.K. is now one of the slowest growing markets in the developed world, so unlike others JLR can’t rely on its home market picking up anytime soon. Contrast that with Ford where there is no Brexit in the US or even Mercedes where the German economy is doing well. 

China is the main issue but Brexit is not helping and has the potential to turn a downturn into a full blown crisis! JLR are in this respect symptomatic of the wider U.K. economy… e.g retail where costs have shot up and depressed and already challenging market.

 

Brexiteers need to wake up and admit Brexit is a disaster, especially at the deal we are likely to get will be rubbish!

hackjo

TStag wrote:

The frustration with Brexit is that the pound has dropped and pushed up the cost of imported parts. The other problem is that the U.K. is now one of the slowest growing markets in the developed world, so unlike others JLR can’t rely on its home market picking up anytime soon. Contrast that with Ford where there is no Brexit in the US or even Mercedes where the German economy is doing well. 

China is the main issue but Brexit is not helping and has the potential to turn a downturn into a full blown crisis! JLR are in this respect symptomatic of the wider U.K. economy… e.g retail where costs have shot up and depressed and already challenging market.

 

Brexiteers need to wake up and admit Brexit is a disaster, especially at the deal we are likely to get will be rubbish!

Sounds like you best make plans to emigrate on that basis!

Notaracingdriver

I already did…

I already did…

Unless you work in the automotive industry I don’t think you can form an opinion on what might happen. 

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