Blog : What is Jaguar Land Rover’s future?

Christopher A Sawyer

Jaguar F-Type

Another Detroit show come and gone, but one thought remains rattling around in my head: what about Jaguar?

Despite what everyone might believe, even though it was sold to Tata Jaguar is still in the orbit of the Ford Motor Company. Every one of the cars it produces today owes something to Ford, whether it is the engines, switchgear or the electrical architecture. It is based on work begun under Ford’s ownership.

Soon that will have to come to an end. Ford has moved on, and is in the process of revamping its range of vehicles and components. Already, the Focus no longer uses the platform which still underpins the Land Rover Freelander/LR2 and Range Rover Evoque. The powertrains also are much modified and Ford will stop supplying the older versions as soon as the agreements with India’s Tata, Jaguar Land Rover’s new owners, allow.

To that end, JLR, has begun to develop its own family of engines, launching a new turbocharged four-cylinder and supercharged V6. There’s a strong likelihood these engines share parts of their design with the engines Jaguar inherited from its time under Ford’s umbrella, but the important thing to note is that JLR is responsible for these motors, not Ford. How they are developed, produced and priced depends on them, not someone in Dearborn.

Unfortunately, that’s only part of the challenge JLR faces. It must do the same with every part and component on its vehicles. This is not as easy as it might seem, especially when the regulatory landscape is as tough and restrictive as it is right now. Without the resources of a multinational volume automaker from which to draw, it becomes much tougher and more expensive to give the customer what he wants at a price he is willing to pay.

This is where Audi, of all the luxury automakers, has a big advantage. It doesn’t have to stand on its own, it can draw on the ample resources of the VW Group, which extend to its new modular production system. The MQB architecture just launched with the seventh generation Golf, and similar plans are afoot for a mid-engined/rear-engined sports car architecture, as well as one for longitudinal front- and all-wheel drive vehicles.

But as much as this helps cut costs, it’s what happening in engines, gearboxes, electrical architectures and infotainment that will drive costs down even more. The sheer scales VW will be capable of reaching could be staggering – that means Audi will be able to add more to its cars for less, and pick and choose form the rest of the components and systems to create new vehicles and enter new markets.

Jaguar does not have this luxury, pardon the pun, and will have to establish a compelling image and personality for its cars to combat Audi’s Blitzkrieg capabilities. That’s not impossible, but it is difficult, and it must be done at the same time the brand moves into new sectors to fill some of the larger gaps in its lineup. This includes the introduction of a new small sedan, coupe and wagon to go against BMW’s 3- and 4- Series, and at least a pair of crossovers that are more like sporting off-road coupes when compared to their Range Rover cousins. It’s a tall order.

How Tata and JLR will handle this should make for interesting viewing, and it will take a long time to determine how successful they will be. Though freed from the constraints it had placed on it as part of the Ford empire — much like a corporation or individual after it comes out of bankruptcy — JLR has had a clean slate and more autonomy than in recent memory. However, it still has some major hurdles to overcome.

Christopher Sawyer is the creator of The Virtual Driver

Keith Adams


  1. Chris, there have been a few articles etc on this very subject recently.
    However i dont get what all the fuss is about.
    JLR has been designing/engineering out ford parts for a few years now,
    Yes current platforms are related to the old focus, but you’ll find elements of platforms carried over generations of models by all manufacturers.

  2. This and the previous article on JLR is a cautionary note I had not previously thought of. As JLR is my employer’s biggest customer the other day I printed for my boss ‘JLR must invest in the future’. Who knows, we may get a new reader!

  3. Oh hey, yeh that reminds me, I saw the new 3-series rival in in AutoExpress(?). Looks good, kind of a mix of XJ and XF but smaller.

    By the way, platforms are not something I’d worry to much about, nor transmission (-much of that is off the shelf anyway). – But electrical architecture is a totally different thing, and I wonder if these guys have enough of a scale to actually achieve good solid reliability at a cost that is acceptable per unit produced in the volumes that they build.

    I certainly feel that there needs to be some sort of joined up thinking here and particular, I feel Tata should follow the VW route and get their own bread-and-butter cars (which should be built to at least VW standards) developed in parallel to the smaller Jaguars.

    And I’m not against seeing a VW Touran / VW Golf-Jetta / VW Passat rival from these guys either, if only to share with the next baby/mid Jag, the next LR Evoque (for example).

  4. Tata is a motor manufacturer in it’s own right, and although mostly known over here for their small cars, they also make commercials. So they probably have in-house expertise at vehicle wiring systems (albeit not necessarily of the quality that JLR require).

    Engines will be more of a headache. However, if a car company of the scale of TVR can design an engine from scratch, it ought not be out of the capability of the talented engineers from JLR. And gearboxes are usually bought in (albeit adapted). I think the omens are good.

  5. Is it really such a big issue though? All it takes is a bit of negotiation and a licensing agreement. Ford use FIAT 500 platforms for the Fiesta, Toyota and PSA share small cars etc.

    TATA are big enough to licence build those components in-house or to buy them from whoever sells them to Ford in the first place (royalty fees paid to Ford of course). I’m sure that the people making these components now would be happy to do so long after Ford no longer need them. Then TATA will progressively take it in-house as eacg succesive model is replaced.

  6. Have to agree with Richard Moss, even if the tech used becomes obselete to ford, a continued licencing payment will secure its continued use by JLR. The vast majority of components are manufactured by outside suppliers anyway. Engines are the biggest bugbear, but is well on the way to being remedied. As long as JLR can secure the use of the tech, engine assemby can easily be outsourced if ford suddenly close the production line.

    On the subject of quality, I was led to believe that quality and reliability, especially of electrical gubbins had vastly improved under TATA.

  7. It does look odd, despite current sales and profitability. You have to assume, I suppose, that they have a clear strategy and they know what they’re doing. I agree with Richard Moss, they should be looking for platform and component-sharing opportunities, and its therefore a bit surprising that they seem to be developing their own engine. Hopefully, that will be sold to others to use as well. The comparison with TVR needs to be seen in the light of the appalling reliability of their engine, which would kill JLR’s reputation stone dead.

    The other possibility, i suppose, is that Tata will pump in so much cash that JLR will be able to stand alone as a premium large-scale manufacturer like BMW or Benz. An expensive strategy, but with new models, new markets being successfully exploited, and new factories being built in the UK and on other continents, not altogether out of scope I suppose. A company the size of Tata would presumably have the money and the business skills to do it. It begs the question of whether JLR has the engineering skills to develop a much bigger new range of models of the right quality, without a partner. An enticing prospect!

  8. Tata are a huge organisation and clearly have the resources in terms of money. JLR could though probably do with a JV with someone else though to look at ways to cut development costs and economies of scale. Engines are a massive investment and very expensive so being able to find someone to sell these too would be handy.

    I have confidence that they can do it but they are still a tiny manufacturer in world terms still some way off where they need to be in terms of volume. t will take time but they will hopefully get there in the end.

  9. All they have to do is tease us with concepts of their “future design direction”, claim’ when they release their X-Type replacement, they’ve “learnt the lessons from the XF” and promise on a pile of bibles that their “new” new sports car is – “straight up missus, not joking this time, poke me in the eye and call me Susan if we’re lying” the real “real” spiritual successor to the E-Type. And if all else fails – just repeat “we made the E-Type, we made the E-Type” until people stop moaning.

  10. The Jaguar V8 were designed by Jaguar. Ford tried to claim credit retrospectively but this was all Jaguar’s work.

  11. This is an article which I have found difficult to understand, because it seems to ignore the fact that Jaguar LR have been using at least four different engine streams in the recent past, only 2 of which had anything to do with Ford ( the 2 to 3 litre V6 petrol and the 2.2 litre diesel ) . Far and away the largest numbers of Jaguar cars sold have had the Peugeot derived V6 diesel , and the top line cars had the Jaguar designed and manufactured V8 . Similarly, with LR the engines used have been the Jaguar petrol ones and either the aforementioned Peugeot V6 or the inhouse V8 diesels . Thus it seems to me that the Ford engine input predominantly has been restricted to filling in small niches towards the bottom end of the market

  12. There have been a few of these naysayer posts recently about JLR. It seems to disturb us that the company is actually doing better than it ever has and making large profits. We seem determined to talk it down and look for negatives for some reason. All these things that JLR “must do” – or “needs to do” – its doing! and has been since before it changed hands from Ford to Tata. Its V8 and recently launched V6 engines are theirs. JLR effectively own a chunk of the Ford Bridgend plant that makes these engines exclusively for Jaguar. The V6 diesels where also a joint venture engine developed with Ford and PSA in the same way that many manufacturers jointly develop engines. Transmissions are sourced from the likes of ZF, not Ford and suspension/chassis components on XF/XK/XJ and the larger Land Rover/Range Rover products are all JLRs own work. The 4 cylinder Petrol/Diesel and some chassis elements on Evoque/Freelander are the only significant Ford content. As noted a thousand times JLR are building a new Engine plant in Wolverhampton and will be making their own 4 cylinder motors shortly. So go and worry about something else!

  13. ……….Also its felt that because JLR is no longer part of a global motor empire it is at a disadvantage in terms of investment. Its now in the ownership of a global industrial combine that probably has far more financial clout than your average car manufacturer could ever dream of!

  14. Of more concern to me; was the Jaguar stand at Detroit actually worth visiting? Jaguar do the most boring, restricted motor shows stands of all manufacturers. BORING.

  15. I do think JLR need to do what VW are doing. Please do not water down their ranges with dreadful looking so called niche cars, just look at BMW with the dreadful GT models of the 5 & now 3 series. I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again, bring Rover back, put it in direct competition with VW/Seat/Skoda, giving us a quality product for more people to buy. I’m sure when Skoda was first taken over they said they wanted to be the new Rover, says it all to what Rover was then.
    Give Rover the right look, VW quality and driving feel and it will sell like hot cakes. JLR can do this!!!

  16. @5 Richard Moss

    Its the Ford KA that uses the Fiat 500 underpinnings. The Fiesta uses the Mazda 2 Architecture.

  17. Why all the lingering doubts about Jaguar? The company does very well now, it is producing four times as many cars as 30 years ago and exports are massive. It’s clear there’s a huge market for their products and also reliability is vastly improved. All they need now is something to take on the totally overrated BMW 3 series and then the job is done.

  18. Eeh, it only seems yesterday that Land Rover was making its own 4 cylinder petrol and diesel engines, and V8’s, in Solihull North Works. What happens to Bridgend, and the people working there, when Wolverhampton gets into gear? It’s a shame there can’t be more co-operation with Hams Hall.

    I wouldn’t worry too much about electrics – a lot of the IPR/technical support is held by common component/system suppliers.

  19. I just dont get this talk about JLR’s future at all,TATA could probably own both GM and Ford tomorrow,it is cash and asset rich,run by a family and not bean counters,they are also hard nosed businesmen,the firm isnt going to collapse because they cant use Fords body systems,wiring or Ford/PSA,Mazda or Volvo derived engines.The mention of VAG’s MQB platform strategy does make me chuckle,its lineage could arguably be traced back to industrial secret thief Ignacio Lopez-a GM bigwig that sold GM’s platform secrets-epsilon no less,to VAG and we know how that ended….

  20. I think the reason that JLR want to develope their own engines are three fold. The first is to secure their independence and make themselves less reliant on Ford.

    The second is the X-type problem. Didn’t matter how good the car was, when the junior executive took it down the golf course. The 3 series drivers called it a Mondeo in drag. Killed the image, and using Ford engines could have the same image problem.

    The last reason, the Ford engines, especially the Diesels, just aren’t good enough. BMW engines give similar, or better performance and sit in a lower CO2 tax band. JLR has to match BMW if they are to compete.

  21. To put some figures on things, JLRs turnover is £13.5bn or $21bn, roughly a third of BMWs turnover ($68bn). The entire Tata groups turnover is $100bn, a fair bit smaller than the global big three VW ($160bn), GM ($150bn) and Toyota ($200bn). Given the limited range that JLR is trying to target (i.e. posh cars and SUVs made in two countries), they aren’t so much smaller than the competition, and their parent is certainly big enough.

    Interestingly they already have a joint venture with Chery a partner that has pretty healthy sales at 510000 phenomenal growth prospects and may well have access to the biggest piggy bank in the world (the Chinese state). Whether they also have access to everyone else’s technology through Chinese industrial espionage is another matter.

  22. BMW do ok on their own, the big question is can jaguar build a reliable engine with no outside help, or just keep a deal going with ford and pay a fee per engine.

  23. The big test is producing their own 4 cylinder engine. I presume many of the development engineers at Gaydon would have worked on previous British 4 cylinder engines, such as the K series…

    The big diesels already have plenty of JLR input into their design, I imagine this arrangement will continue as it is. Similarly, Bridgend produces the Jaguar designed V8, I presume the new V6 will be built there as well, as the old one was built by Ford in the US.

  24. I think when you look at the financal figures, Jaguar Land Rover’s performance looks rather impressive given the fact they produced over 300,000 vehicle in 2012 compared to approximately two million vehicles by the BMW Group (my apologies for not having the exact figures to hand) for the same period. JLR also seems to enjoy a higher profit margin against its smaller turnover compared to BMW Group.

    On a lighter note, the main picture featuring a black Jaguar F Type with colour matching wheels really does look rather appealing. I can’t wait for the reveal of the Coupe version over the coming months.

  25. Knock-on effects of the demise of BL/MGRover will reverberate for many years to come. The BL parts bin was a useful cost-saving place to go. Licences from anyone (Ford, Pugeot, whoever) are expensive and have to go (look no further than BMW-Honda, MG Rover-BMW).
    As said: Tata are huge and make their own vehicles. They could probably create quality within themselves to share around the brands, but I think business sense says: Link. JVs or amalgamations or takeovers with the Chinese. I think that’s the way they’ll go. And a strong, healthy Jaguar is surely a big part of Tata’s ambitious plans.
    I’d trust the Indians to care for Jag more than ever I did the cowboys of Detroit.

  26. This is just another example of why TATA should re-introduce the Rover brand so that they can grow their market reach across the globe. I do believe TATA, as a car brand, just will not be strong enough and rightly or wrongly, drawing attention to TATA as the parent of JLR will harm their brand. There are only two ways that JLR will benefit from economies of scale, one is to join up with a larger manucturer, which I cannot see happening again, or growing it’s own market share. JLR cannot grow market share too much without losing it’s identity in the strong markets to which it is well known (luxury, SUV, 4×4 etc). There has never been a stronger argument for relaunching the Rover moniker IMO but they must get the cars right, and they must be global.

  27. @ James:

    Perhaps one possible solution is for Jaguar Land Rover to consider collaborative research programmes with a company such as Volvo? Admittedly Volvo (and also Saab, RIP) was not known to be an easy company to work with, but it is of simiar size to JLR in terms of production output and is in need of replacing many of its models that are now over ten years old in terms of their production life.

    For Volvo it would give them the chance to deliver what previous, and many loyal, Volvo owners in numerous markets are wanting – a return to rear-wheel drive and solid engineering, which started to diminish with the arrival of the 850.

    JLR would get the chance to work with another quality manufacturer with particular strengths in diesel engines and turbocharging technology, while Volvo would get the chance to utilise new rear-wheel drive platforms and V6 petrol engines to replace its long-in-the-tooth straight-six engine. Moreover, perhaps Volvo might even learn something about the cultural differences in various markets when it comes to product marketing, as this has been a major weakness of the Swedish company for many years, hence the unfavourable perception of the brand.

  28. Do JLR need to work with another car maker?they return a tidy profit so why all this talk of reintroducing Rover and its reach around the globe? Has anyone not noticed how many factories Ford and GM have closed? Strip any JLR product down and it will have piles of off the shelf and bespoke components from Valeo,Visteon,Nokia ZF etc etc etc and lots of chinese stuff too.There are many players in the supply chain of car manufactures as well we know and some think its a risky business building its own engines-thats why Lotus,Ricardo and multitudes of engine design consultancies (some now defunct)have work farmed out to them or JV’d.
    Fords entire petrol engine range transformed overnight when it took up the reigns of Mazda years ago,because it could’nt make an engine to save its life.

  29. Maybe the reason for all the talk of resurrecting Rover is because this site is AR (Austin Rover) on line and we love Rover cars and if there is any glimmer of hope of a decent car manufacturer bringing the name back to life we latch on to it. lol.

  30. @30 I wish Rover never had to be in a position were it had to be resurrected,the rot set in years ago and we did everything to help it on its way.We never buy British and moan at our own decline,how many people refused to buy a BMW product after Rovers collapse?

  31. People were put off British cars in the 1970’s, thanks to the laughably badly made range of cars, and constant strikes over stupid things. BL and AR then Rovergroup/MG Rover never really recovered from the dark days of the 1970’s, and constantly suffered from a real lack of investment. JLR are now cash rich (the boardroom can afford to have money fights, unlike GM & Ford who are both skint), and I can see the Tata family pumping the cash in on a regular basis to keep the brands moving forwards. Yes its going to be a bloody hard fight for Jag especially, but they have the funds to do it.

  32. At the end of the day an Audi is a glorified VW a triumph of marketing over facts. Most of the hype about the high quality interiors etc stop where the soft plastic of the dash top does all else is rather cheap and nasty hard plastics straight out of a…. yep VW.

  33. @33 i think Audi has a bit more depth than that.They look better than equivelant BMW’s,even the new Mazda 6 looks stunning next to a humdrum 3 series.

  34. @ Yorkie, let’s not forget people were prepared to re-visit Rover in the late 80’s when they had a seriously good product, the R8. This turned their fortunes around for a brief moment only to end because the great product was not replaced with a better one. No brand is truly dead providing you give it the right tools to come back with. Must we continue to repeat the likes of Skoda, Hyundai and now Dacia. People are very fickle, which can be a good thing.

    @tr_man this is true of all cars, they are all just component parts stuck together in slightly different ways, some good, some not so good. What sets them apart is the detail such as how successfully tuned they are when driving, how the styling appeals etc.

  35. Jaguar Land Rover are doing well now (look at reviews for the new rangie) and there is panic as profits might not be quite as high as expected. How many years did they loose money and build cars badlly? Quality is way higher than Mercedes manage (possibly excepting the S claas and CLS).

    Tata are investing in engines and, considering how Ford’s sales have dropped in Europe I am sure they would be happy to keep supplying engines qnd other bits for the revenue. If not someone else would.

    JLR are in a good place right now. Long may it last.

  36. Skoda, Hyundai, and Dacia have one thing in common that Rover hasn’t. They never died, and in Skoda & Hyundai’s cases, both have made ever improving cars to sell to the British public.

    The R8 was OK at launch, but they dropped a massive clanger targeting the 400 at BMW man. Styling wise it just looked a bit dated and very Japanese, and BMW had pretty sharp, aggressive lines, and the BMW had a pretty comprehensive engine line up, from the humble 1.8, to 2.8 litre 6 pots, and to be honest Rover didn’t stand a chance.

    I can see why some of you want Rover to return, but it is purely sentimental in all of your cases. You have to sit down & face facts that it is gone, and is unlikely to return in our lifetime

  37. Its nice to see JLR is doing ok, I agree with previous comments,we all to see Rover back on the road,the only way is Tata to produce a car good as BMW but much cheaper,to beat them own game, but its to be good against other brands too. MG producing a fairly decent car,buts not selling,and doent help with there limited engine range,I know now have diesel now,but we had to wait a long time,still waiting for other MG models to come though. I own a Rover 420GSi 1997,its a lovely car but as you know Rover group pitched against to bigger family cars at the time,where as should been against Ford Escort,Vauhall Astra etc. Good feature,Regards Mark

  38. #29
    “Fords entire petrol engine range transformed overnight when it took up the reigns of Mazda years ago,because it could’nt make an engine to save its life”

    Ford engines, I thought they were the work of Yamaha, is there a connection between Mazda and Yamaha?

  39. @40

    IIRC Ford worked with Yamaha on the Zetec (I had an early Zeta and it was a total lemon).

    JLR – They have the backing of the huge Tata group, which includes everything from steel to Tetley teabags.
    As mentioned earlier in the thread too, they are also in a joint venture with Chery. This is probably the equivalent of Rover tying up with Honda when Japanese cars were a bit laughable.
    The diesel engines are HDis, I’m sure if they needed a partner to work on a platform/engine, they could. Joint collaboration is the name of the game in the modern car industry.

    Would like to see the Rover name back, even on captive-imports of Tatas and Cherys.

  40. Autocar, reporting on the new small Jag

    Reports that the planned crossover is to be parked.

    Also mentions the new platform:

    “Building all three model ranges on the same highly scaleable Premium Lightweight Architecture (PLA) aluminium platform — which made its debut under the Mk4 Range Rover — will allow Jaguar to drive into sustainable profitability by running its Castle Bromwich plant at full capacity.”

  41. Why all the talk of wanting to ressurect Rover? Rover for all it’s good (and let’s face it we’re fans) is compeltely finished as a brand. It’s a byword for failure just like Lancia in the UK. JLR have no business to want to develop a volume brand becuase there’s no money in it and way too much compeitition. The Chinese buy JLR’s because they are premium and British.

    Please can we just consign Rover to history?

  42. @ Will M:

    That is a very interesting article which mirrors Ratan Tata’s comments two and a half years ago about the need to rationalise the number of platforms from nine down to no more than four within the next four years.

    This demonstrates some major ongoing commitments in improving economies of scale by treating platforms and engine designs in a more modularistic way. The reference to the flexibility to offer it in front-wheel drive form too is also interesting, as it would offer a number of interesting opportunities for the next generation entry-level Freelander variants (as we already see) and potentially Tata and Chery vehicles built for their respective home markets.

    It is also good to see that there is recognition by JLR to develop the new smaller Jaguar range beyond just one or two bodystyles, but potentially adopt a Rover R8-style approach to offering a number of different bodystyles based around a core platform and body structure design. It was a very sound commercial decision made by Rover Group back in the late 1980s and other manufacturers in more recent times. Therefore the business plan could prove to work rather well for Jaguar’s model plans (and any other companies and brands associated with it).

  43. @David 3500:

    Small Jag with an R8-style modularisation could target different markets.

    Hatch – UK
    Saloon – China
    Estate – Small/lifestyle estates
    Coupe – A small halo model as per Tomcat. Possible ‘R’ option as per M3.
    Small crossover – with the estate model, raise suspension, add a bit of cladding as per Streetwise. Possibly shoehown a LR 4×4 drivetrain underneath, as the platform can be RWD or FWD, should just be a matter of making space for a transfer box?
    MPV – Heightened Estate? Like a Golf Plus but properly executed.

  44. All that Will M just described except for the halo sports coupe would be ideally badged as TATA, not Jaguar, but they could be assembled here easily enough, creating jobs etc. Making 4×4’s with Jag badges is borderline windowlicking, because it harks back to the dark old BL days of in competing, which is bloody stupid to be honest, and will do more harm than good. Jag are execubarge/sports coupe builders, and Lanny/Rangey are the SUV builders. It will just make Jag look like a brand that is confused. And Will M, an MPV with a Jag badge? That is just wrong on so many levels.

  45. I think my comment about an “R8-style modularisation” has been misinterpreted. I was referring to, for example, a new, compact executive saloon whose body structure could spawn an estate, two-door Coupe (think elegant GT rather like a Mercedes Benz CLK than rakish SLK sports) and Convertible. Dependent on many factors, possibly even a stylish 4-door Coupe. Think along the lines of what Mercedes Benz or even BMW does.

    However, at a deeper level, the modularity theme could spawn more specialised variants to compete in different market sectors. As with a number of popular premium models we have here, the new compact executive saloon could be built in China in a long-wheelbase form for sale exclusively in that market, rather like comparing the Rover 75 to the Limousine version with its own stretched platform.

  46. I can see where you are coming from David, and yes that might work, but the base car has to be the doggies wotsits if it is to win over BMW man, and rear wheel drive is the key

  47. @ 40 Yamaha developed the 1.25 sigma (zetec) engine all the rest are of Mazda origin (apart from early CVH based zeta/zetec engines)in I4 form at least.

  48. @49 – Dont think Mazda have anything to do with the new Ecoboost Engines and definately dont have anything to do with Fords Diesels – They are of course all joint venture units developed with PSA – Thats jointly developed with PSA – Not PSA Engines!

  49. If Tata are to produce a more mainstream car I think that instead of re-introducing the Rover name – which was hugely damaged by the efforts of the Phoenix Four especially rampant HGF – they should do a deal with the copyright holder and resurrect Riley, Wolseley, Vanden Plas or even Alvis.

  50. ….Infact only the 1.8/2.0 litre “Duractec” petrol Engines originally launced in the 2001 Mondeo owe anything to Mazda.

  51. A Jag MPV. Real luxury people carrier. Or badged as a Rover.

    Similar to the Merc Vito which is loved by chauffeurs.

  52. @50, I never said they did.
    @52, Hence my previous comments regarding ford and thier engines.The early belt driven zetecs were only slightly better than the CVH they was based on.

  53. The idea of a Jag mpv or 4X4 is just nonsense,leave that to the dicks at BMW.Did anyone see the abomination of the Aston Martin SUV? JLR would be in shit street within two years if they did something like that.

  54. Will,the Vito is in use as a taxi in London. It’s not posh in the slightest. Its a light commercial, in between Transit Connect and Transit sizes. And @51, guess who owns those names…Yup it’s our old friends in Munich, so not a snowflakes chance in hell of ever using those names.

    I still can’t get over Will M’s idea for a Jaguar minibus. It really does tickle me

  55. Why is a Jaguar MPV such a bad idea? You’ve got the platform and 4wd technology from LR, dress it up in a stunning, sleek body and hey presto a Cayenne beater. The big SUVs have taken a fair chunk of the previous market for luxury saloons, hence the number of Cayenes and X5s you see around, vehicles which are NEVER taken off road, and are sold on performance and handling .

    This talk of resurrecting brands is irrelevant, it will be a small Jaguar, and it still will be an expensive, prestige product. Jaguar/Tata aren’t going to plunge downmarket to build family hacks and suffer the volume sector sales bloodbath, they don’t have the factory capacity for a start!

  56. @4 AJV8 has been a Jaguar creation all the way through and the current GenIII engine only shares it’s head bolts with the previous engine… And you’d have to be a bit pedantic in that case to say it’s just a rehash of the old.

    Like I say, powertrain and even chassis architecture is nothing to worry about, particularly if they are using a scalable type (or ‘types’ if they are looking at small and large).

    Electrics and electronics will have to be ultra robust and reliable, especially since we are now dealing with CANs that seem to debate even whether a switch should be allowed to open the electric windows or not.

    Perhaps Aston Martin should jump into bed with the JLR guys and sort something out…

  57. I dont think theres much to worry about most cars these days share components across makes and models and really most of the small components are made by someone else. eg bosch, recarro, only the cosmetic parts are made by the factory themselves. JLR have already indicated they are considering outsourcing more fabrication, to streamline production. Jaguar are quite capable of designing good engines. the AJ6 was a great engine, reading up on jaguar engine history suggests they know a lot more about engines than say the makers of the oil burning Mitzi petrol engines. The UK is where most of the worlds Engineering IP originated and by and large the engineering is still happening in the UK. alex

  58. @43 I think JLR could be build a smaller and small to medium sized car to fill the gap left by SAAB and a better car than the Vectra (or what ever you call it over there) basically bring back the theme behind the Riley cars, nice small cars with a bit more luxury than the run of the mill small car, but still with sports handling and performance. I think the Rover brand would fit well with that theme. alex

  59. I’m going to stand over my opinion that Jag should have an MPV, either under it’s own brand or as a Rover.

    As an alternative to ferrying well heeled familes / VIPs in SUVs, and competing with the big chauffeured Merc people carriers – I meant Vianos and not Vitos (eg. ) and Chrysler / Lancia Voyagers. Other than these, there seems to be few “prestige” people carriers – this is a real market opening I reckon.

    I understand fully that this would be controversial, but then the X type FWD estate and diesel had purists up in arms, and at least 2 of those have made it onto the XF.
    Jag is moving with the times and doing well for it, shedding it’s Arthur Daley image.

    All brands seem to be branching out. When I was on the Alfa forum, the talk of an Alfa SUV was sacrilege, but it is likely to happen based on a Jeep platform when Fiat get their finances in order. We are also going to see a Bentley SUV in production.

  60. @ Will M:

    Although I am personally not a fan of a Jaguar MPV, I think you argue your view with a lot of conviction. As you say, Jaguar is moving with the times and beginnng to shed its Arthur Daley and retro image; I wonder how many of us realise that the XF is now available with four-wheel drive in export markets?

    What we are seeing is a brand and a company that is moving forward with genuine conviction and producing model ranges that are selling in higher numbers than their predecessors – this is what makes the business viable. Admittedly I really do hate the fat rear-end of the new XJ with its number plate mounted in the bumper. But then, I am not likely to buy one anyway, and this personal observation has not prevented it from being a strong seller over the X357 generation model.

    Oppinions expressed are also based on a multitude of factors and no-one should feel they should not be able to make theirs, regardless to how much they do or do not accord with those of the masses. I won’t mention the ‘R’ brand however, as the last time I did this on a similar post several other commentators were becoming quite beastly!

  61. Will I hate to burst your bubble, but Merc only sell a handful of these Vito van based mini limos(The Viano is 100% Vito under the skin and the bodyshell is just the lwb van), and the people carrier market has just about died off. It was a fad, and now its Chelsea tractors all the way, and the more vulgar, the better it seems. Nobody buys Voyagers since the earlier gen got a 1 star NCAP rating either. It would not justify the tens of billions to develop one just to sell a couple of hundred a year. Alfa aren’t exactly a premium brand either, they go from expensive to banger money in record time. Same with anything with a Chrysler badge

    Bentley have become a vulgar brand, thanks to them being the choice of premiership footballers, and being VAG, it will be yet another parts bin special, using mostly Q7 parts, keeping development costs low, and to a footballer, Jag just isn’t a posh enough badge.

    And please give it a rest thinking Rover will come back. They will never return, ever. The badge was destroyed spectacularly, as SAIC are finding with the MG badge.

  62. unfortunately Jaguar Land Rover needs to open up to new sectors if it is to survive. Despite the backing of TATA, it is still a minnow compared to the rest of the world’s luxury mainstream companies, and without the Ford link, the economies of scale for certain parts will be expensive.

    But like Hyundai, Samsung Motors and (at then time it was independent), Daewoo have had access to cheap good quality steel from their ship building activities (why do you think they’re so cheap?) TATA has access to it’s raw materials and will go some way to reducing costs. But they will need to platform share across their range to bring their costs lower.. And that will inevitably mean exploring new sectors. So the MPV and 4×4 idea may never be fully put to bed…

    A hatchback 1-series rival will be your strongest bet at the moment though. A platform for this model and a Evoque replacement.

  63. @ 65,new sectors?what like jupiter or neptune? its on the shirt tails of the worlds biggest cash rich consumer country which is china,they turd ten pound notes these guys.
    It does not need ford its got engine supply agreements and a bit of wiring so what?has nobody any grasp of history? like Ford and PAG or Merc and chrysler? even BMW and Rover,they got too big for thier boots. Merc seen it coming and bailed quick,Ford and GM only just survived.JLR are doing fine as they are,in fact they are on fire a 14 month+ wait for the L405 alone.Just because JLR is under the TATA umbrella does not mean they get steel on the cheap,every section of this business has to be viable in its own right,bulk supply and just in time supply lines keep cost down and using the plant to its full capacity-every vehicle built has to pay for the factory and wage bill first,these cars are making a tidy profit so why be greedy?

  64. but you are talking about companies having to work with many other dog-eared poorly performing brands and that’s where it got out of hand. Too many groups wanting different things and not enough proper planning. I’d like to point out that VW-Audi Group does exceedingly well, so your point is not valid. Besides I’m talking about maximising the use of their engineering architecture (not necessarily manufacturing assets) within a small group of brands.

    You misunderstood my point though.. The JLR group itself must expand its range, not only to cover sectors well established in the industry (I’m not talking about markets.. I’m not sure where you came up with this as I never mentioned markets – it’s obvious as everyone is doing it) but areas which are really starting to gain ground such small luxury cars. Crikey, even BMW has produced a diddy sports car, based on one of their Mini chassis.. Besides you’re sounding like Jaguar should stick to a 4 model range.. Perhaps we should ditch 3-series rival then… Head in the sand methinks….

    Jaguar shouldn’t do this, Jaguar shouldn’t do that… It’s this narrow mindedness which can land a company like this in trouble for failing to grow, even in a carefully planned manner, thus lack a greater industrial influence. Jaguar/LR is still a minnow.. – Compare just how big Mercedes and BMW have become simply just by expanding their ranges, and even, in the case of Merc, vans, trucks and Buses, and in the case of BMW, Mini and Rolls Royce. Look at the power and influence they have.

    Put it this way JIT and maximising plant usage can get you so far but expanding the range and building an extra plant needs to happen in order for them to expand as a company within itself. Jaguar in particular is vulnerable at the moment until they have many more models to sell, and JLR as a group can maximose the results of the R&D they carry out to not just a few models but many models as possible, which can reduce costs per model (not just per unit) and turn over a viable good profit. – economies of scale is not just a measurement for parts ordering….

    A diverse eight model range from Jaguar is entirely possible, which should be encouraged, and TATA could make extra use of the architecture to develop their own models, including 4WDs and standard saloons. Further reducing cost of developing an expanding overall range.

    One thing I will say is the Chery connection is a bit of an unknown at this time.. I’m sure that the JLR/Chery corporation are developing all new vehicles as opposed to shared architecture vehicles, although the processes are likely to be the same. That’s speculation right now so we have to wait until it all plays out to see what they’ve got planned.


    1. JLR needs to expand it’s model range to increase it’s industrial and market sector influence. Jaguar is particularly vulnerable.

    2. shared architecture needed to maximise return profits on r&d. This may include sharing architecture with TATA passenger cars for upper models and 4x4s. win-win.

    3. Larger size is good if properly controlled and all brands have a strong portfolio and identity. Rover and Chrysler didn’t. VAG does.


  65. If a ‘Rover’ ever returns from JLR, it is surely most likely to be as a Something Rover, a sister to Land Rover and Range Rover. That probably means no longship and no chrome, but styling and marketing cues from the 4×4 products. A rugged, luxury MPV-type product with ground clearance, looking something like an Evoque but larger, and with more seats, might not be too bad. I wouldn’t want it parking next to me, but can see that it might be popular in some parts of the world. Surely this would work better as a LR product than a Jaguar-branded one?

    It’s a shame the ‘City Rover’ name was previously applied to something so unfortunate. What else could they use? Street Rover’s not bad, a bit weak. People Rover? (weak). Execu Rover? (awful). Multi Rover? Flex Rover? (connotations of poor stiffness!)

    Maybe ‘Land Rover City’ would be better?

    It would also be exciting to see how JLR could co-opt different bits of Rover history to provide ‘heritage’ for the new product: P6 would fit, SD1 would fit, CCV maybe, 75 probably not.

  66. P.S. Imagine if Rover Group had developed a Discovery-esque MPV in the late eighties: Space Rover (a cut above the Space Wagon, Space Cruiser, Space Runner, etc).

  67. Dan
    At the end of the day, Land Rover and especially Range Rover have massive brand ‘cred’ and desirability, whereas Rover by itself doesn’t. I can’t see why they’d want to hark back to SD1 or P6, as they mean nothing to most buyers, whereas the original Range Rover itself is famous as the pioneer of luxury ‘SUVs’, and a symbol of style and desirability.

    I can’t see much useful platform sharing with TATA at the moment, because of the diversity of their car ranges, but there’s no reason why they can’t work with other manufacturers, hence those rumours a few years ago about sharing a RWD platform with FIAT to produce a proper RWD Alfa.

  68. @67,I really think you should be in charge of JLR worldwide operations,These brands sit in a certain sector,that being a luxury car maker bar Defender,base Freelander.Who is anyone on this forum to say what JLR can and cant do? sont you think they know what they are doing?did they die when the X was discontinued? they dont need silly MPV’s and eight model car ranges just because everyone does,The VAG brand got lucky when the iron curtain fell and bought/signed agreements with IFA/Trabant then bought Skoda for a song then Seat.Do you really think JLR need no expand right now while Ford itself will post a £1.3 billion loss in europe at the year end?

  69. Jaguar would be mad to resurrect the Rover name, Britain is not competitive in that market, in fact only VW is really making money in that sector, due to huge economies of scale. However it is interesting that the new JLR Wolverhampton engine plant originally built to manufacture 400,000 engines a year, has already been extended to make an increased number.

  70. Saw a test F-Type on the Autobahn near Saarbrücken on Monday and it looks great. I’m sure JLR have a great future they just need to maintain the highest quality standards.

  71. Talk of Rover’s total demise seems a little premature;

    a) the Rover in Land Rover is a bit of a clue
    b) the current range of Roewes would be called Rovers if SAIC had had its way

  72. I think we need to see the bigger picture in terms of global car markets.
    Yes, In the UK, people who have been brought up on a diet of german-worshipping motoring media might scoff at Rovers, but in the US they call Range Rovers ‘Rovers’, and China would have no issue in buying Rovers as a luxury marque.

  73. This really is a case of “wait and see”.

    Incidentally, I’ve always believed that the Freelander/LR2 and Evoque are a platform share with what Ford refers to as EUCD, that’s to say Mondeo, S-Max and Galaxy, not the Focus, which is a C-Class car in Fordspeak.

  74. More bandwagon press here, there is a lot going at Jaguar, there has been more going on than the joe public know of and as soon as Tata took control the rashionalisation of Ford equipment took hold, there are a number of new things on the horizon, nothing whatsoever to do with Ford.

    It shows that a company away from Ford can be successful, and look how well it has done, Ford nearly broke it, Tata has given it life and room to breathe.

  75. At the time of buying Jaguar, Tata was also securing a technology sharing agreement with Fiat. I doubt Fiat subsequent securing of Chrysler has blocked that agreement, so I expect to see in the coming years the fruits of this relationship in the next generation of JLR / Maserati products.

    And fruitful it should be as JLR Aluminium chassis technology is head of the game, as with Maserati “Ferrari” high performance engine technology and certainly Fiat Diesel technology is as good if not better than Fords. Also on LR Defender / Military business sits well with the Iveco Military products.

  76. Iveco recently dropped the former Santana ‘Massif’, which was a sort of mutant Land Rover Series 3 with lots of Fiat content. Hmmmmmmmm

  77. I really do think some people on here are too pessimistic about Jaguar, when in reality the company is doing extremely well and is as good as anything from Germany. Growing up in the late seventies, I do remember what was the company’s darkest era in the late seventies, run by a largely unloved nationalised corporation, losing money hand over fist, producing cars which made an Allegro look reliable and seeing market share evaporate. Now Jaguar is a roaring success, but why the doubt, nothing is going wrong and I think the company has an excellent future

  78. I agree with Glenn at 81 . The current Jaguar line up has 1 really great car in it ( XF ) which has been an enormous success . I am less convinced about more recent offerings, particularly XJ which to me seems to compete too much with the XF but there is no doubt that for the first time since the Lyons era the car is in great demand . I too remember the dark days – I had a 1977 XJ6C which was horribly unreliable – and the present cars are a world away from that in terms of quality control . This is not a volume car manufacturer, and the suggestions that it should be seem to me to be misconceived ( and one only has to look at the trouble the volume manufacturers are in to see the folly of that suggestion in a market hopelessly oversupplied with cars ) . I hope it will continue to build on what has been achieved by aiming its products at the market it has always occupied

  79. Bring back Rover- why on earth tata cannot rebadge cars with a Rover name i do not know. With most manufacturers sharing resources it could be viable, there are lots of options with Rover,if Tata do not want to use the brand, the chinese might, Tata could lease the name to MG Motor. Interesting to note than on wikipedia, Austin Motors logo has been updated by SAIC – exactly the same as the previous one. Rumours persist that Austin may come back. Bring them all back! Kicking and screaming!!!!

  80. I think we have to forecast the attitudes towards motoring of todays 18 to 25 year old consumers 10 to 20 years hence.

    If narcissism and self-indulgence remain socially acceptable, then companies such as Audi Jaguar BMW Mercedes will all have a future

  81. @84 – What complete and utter nonsense. God help us all if your thinking becomes prevalent. Not for the first time upon visiting this website, I absolutely despair!

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