HALEWOOD’S Range Rover Evoque has helped Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) achieve its best ever global sales figures last year.
The luxury car maker which employs 4,500 staff at its Knowsley plant unveiled record breaking sales figures of 357,773 vehicles – a 30% increase across its 177 worldwide markets.
These latest figures also show that China is now JLR’s biggest market after a 71% increase in sales there.
JLR has signed a joint venture deal with Chinese car maker Chery to build a new production plant near Shanghai to feed the appetite for the company’s iconic models.
The Indian-owned group also revealed that its Land Rover brand sold more cars in 2012 than ever before – up 36% – while sales of Jaguar models showed a 6% improvement.
Halewood makes the popular Range Rover Evoque and the Land Rover Freelander 2 and the Evoque has proved to be the star performer in JLR’s range, with more than 100,000 sales across the world.
The top performing markets for JLR were China (71,940 sales) , the UK (68,333, up 19%) and the US (55,675, up 11%).
There was a 43% increase in sales for Russia, up to 20,549 vehicles, and a 41% jump in German sales to 16,722 vehicles.
JLR has also confirmed that it will create up to 800 new jobs at its advanced manufacturing facility in Solihull to support the introduction of new model programmes throughout 2013 to build on its global sales success.
At the North American International Motor Show in Detroit today, Phil Popham, JLR’s director of group sales operations, said: “2012 has been a strong year for Jaguar Land Rover with record-breaking sales performance globally.
“All of our key markets saw strong progress, with demand for our premium vehicles setting new records in a very competitive environment.
“Looking ahead to 2013, we are continuing to invest in our business to support our ambitious plans for growth and we will be introducing eight new or refreshed products throughout the year.”
The company said notable product performances in its record sales year were delivered by the Range Rover Evoque with 108,598 vehicles sold in its first full year of sales – more than any other previous Land Rover model.
Land Rover’s global brand director John Edwards said today: “2012 was an excellent year for Land Rover; we delivered a powerful global performance throughout the year across all markets, with the highlight being that we have sold more vehicles this year than ever before in our 65 year history.
“Our updated model line-up and the debut of the new Range Rover have created a real buzz around the brand with customers clearly delighted with our offerings.”