Jaguar, the luxury cars manufacturer embroiled in a lengthy pay dispute with workers , has enjoyed its busiest ever three months trading. Sales during the first three months of 1988 reached their highest figure of almost 12,000, an increase of 21 per cent on the same quarter in 1987. Jaguar said nearly 8,000 vehicles were shipped abroad during the first quarter and 4,000 were sold in Britain.
But to compete with West German rivals , BMW and Mercedes, it plans to lift production from 48,000 to 56,000c cars a year and raise output per employee from four to six cars a year. Current plans are bogged down in the dispute over pay, with more than 4,000 workers in Coventry twice rejecting a productivity bonus deal. Jaguar is offering £12.50 a week on top of the £33.75 a week productivity bonus if the new production targets are reached but union officials have warned of a walkout by employees if Jaguar starts to speed up the assembly tracks.