LUXURY car maker Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) is planning a £10bn investment drive over the next seven years to double production at its plants, including Halewood, in Knowsley.
The claim follows briefings to industry sources that revealed a new range of 16 models set to roll off production lines at Halewood and JLR’s two Midlands factories by 2020.
These include a soft-top version of the Range Rover Evoque – Halewood’s best-selling model – as well as an even smaller version of the vehicle which has ignited sales in overseas markets such as China and Russia since its launch last year.
JLR’s plans are said to include a £1.8bn investment in a car plant in China.
A “baby” Freelander is also on the drawing board which would increase production at Halewood where the current Land Rover Freelander2 is made.
The top-selling 4x4 is already dispatched from Halewood in knock-down form to Pune, India, where cars are then assembled for local showrooms.
Expansion in China and India are part of the ambitious seven-year plan which aims to double total vehicle sales to 600,000 and expand capacity at its UK plants, which last month signed a pay and conditions deal with Unite the Union based on assurances over production levels for at least a decade.