Land Rover to axe 4,500 jobs
Brexit-facing Jaguar Land Rover will axe about 4,500 jobs, most of them in the UK, the Indianowned car maker said on Thursday.
Brexit-facing Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) will axe about 4,500 jobs, most of them in the UK, the Indian-owned carmaker said on Thursday, after a slump in Chinese sales and as buyers dump diesel cars for electric.
“JLR is expanding a businesswide organisation review aimed at reducing the size of its global workforce by around 4,500 people,” the company said. “This is in addition to the 1,500 who left the company during 2018.”
Owned by India’s Tata Motors, JLR employs 44,000 people worldwide, 42,500 of which are in Britain.
In a busy day of announcements by the car sector, US group Ford said it plans a major restructuring of its European operations, including job cuts, to boost profitability.
Rolls-Royce Motor Cars said it had no intention of switching UK production abroad despite growing concerns over the possible effect of a no-deal Brexit on the economy.
German-owned Rolls-Royce sold a record number of luxury vehicles in 2018, with purchases soaring worldwide, it announced on Thursday.
As for JLR, its move to shed more than 10% of its UK workforce is aimed at delivering £2.5bn of cost cuts over 18 months, as the group looks to move further into the electric car segment amid a huge dropoff in sales of diesel vehicles.
“We are taking decisive action to help deliver long-term growth, in the face of multiple geopolitical and regulatory disruptions as well as technology challenges facing the automotive industry,” said the CEO of JLR, Ralf Speth.
He added that “investing in cleaner, smarter, more desirable cars and electrifying ... facilities to manufacture a future range of British-built electric vehicles will all form part of building a globally competitive and flourishing company”.
JLR suffered a 21% drop in Chinese car sales in 2018, while it has sought to contain any possible Brexit fallout.
The company has already moved to ensure it will still have a plant inside the EU after Britain’s planned departure from the bloc on March 29. In October, JLR opened a €1.4bn factory in Nitra, Slovakia, its first in continental Europe.
In July it warned that a “bad” Brexit deal could jeopardise planned investment of more than $100bn, saying the future was unpredictable without free and frictionless trade with the EU and unrestricted access to its single market.
Britain’s business minister, Greg Clark, said on Thursday a no-deal Brexit would be a disaster for JLR. “They have always been clear that their success depends on exports, including to the rest of the EU.”
He said: “They are one of the prime examples of a brilliant just-in-time manufacturing process. Given the difficulties that they are going through ... to add further costs and further disruption from a no-deal Brexit, it’s clear why they have been so clear why this would be against their interests.”
British production: Workers arrive at Jaguar Land Rover’s Halewood plant in Liverpool, Britain, on Thursday.