Has Longbridge lease ended?
MG Motor remains tight-lipped on historic buildings’ long-term future
MG Motor is refusing to confirm or deny rumours that it has terminated its lease at Longbridge.
Suggestions that the Chinese owned company has pulled the plug on its 22year lease, which has a six-month clause allowing it to leave the premises, have been circulating for weeks.
In an attempt to address the concerns, site owners, St Modwens, has released a statement saying: ‘Shanghai Automotive (MG’s owner) remains a long-standing tenant at Longbridge on a 22-year lease. We are in regular contact with the car manufacturer who has confirmed that its marketing, sales and aftersales operations will remain at the plant.’
St Modwens has not, however, stated whether or not operations will remain in the buildings currently being used, or if the six-month clause allowing MG to leave has been activated.
‘SA remains a longstanding tenant at Longbridge’ ST MODWENS
MG Motor – which has already quietly removed the word ‘UK’ from its name – has also yet to address or comment upon the issue of what will happen to the priceless artefacts that are still kept within Longbridge. These include Herbert Austin’s original office and paperwork, a selection of machine tools and a 20-25-strong collection of various prototype and historic cars.
MG owns all of the assets contained within the factory, but only rents the various historic buildings – including the glass-roofed Elephant House, the Kremlin, Car Assembly Building (CAB) 1 and CAB 2.
The future looks uncertain for Longbridge and (inset) Herbert Austin’s old office.