Fall in sales of diesel cars in the UK has led to company trimming workforce at Solihull plant

Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) will not renew the contracts of 1000 agency workers at its Solihull facility due to industry challenges caused by falling diesel car sales.

JLR is holding meetings today with staff to discuss the changes, which it said are the result of “continuing headwinds” that have forced the company to make "adjustments to production schedules and the number of agency staff”.

In a statement issued on Friday before the number of staff losses was confirmed, JLR said: “We are, however, continuing to recruit large numbers of highly skilled engineers, graduates and apprentices, because we are overproportionally investing in new products and technologies.

“We also remain committed to our UK plants, in which we have invested more than £4 billion since 2010 to future-proof manufacturing technologies to deliver new models.”

Britain’s biggest car manufacturer employs 40,000 people in the UK, of whom a quarter work at the Solihull plant.

Meanwhile, around 360 workers at the Castle Bromwich factory, which builds Jaguar models, are set be relocated to Solihull. The move is attributed to declining output at Castle Bromwich as demand for new cars falls.

Long-standing effects of the ongoing diesel emissions scandal, which include the raising of tax on diesel cars, have driven down demand for diesel cars, so they now represent just 33.5% of the new car market, down from a 44% share last year. Diesel demand fell by 37.2% last month.

Jaguar's XE and XF are understood to have been hit most heavily, although almost every model has been affected because diesels account for around 90% of JLR's sales.

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This year has been one of major contrast for JLR. Following a record-breaking 2017, in which the company sold 621,109 cars, Jaguar demand is currently down 26% year to date, while Land Rover – the bigger brand within the group – has lost a fifth of demand in the UK.

Professor David Bailey of Aston University, an expert in the car industry, said that the latest sales results have hit JLR particularly hard, although he highlighted the brand's ongoing international success.

"It’s important to recognise that, globally, the firm is still doing very well; it’s still investing heavily in new technology and it’s still hiring engineers, apprentices and graduates," he said. "But there’s no getting away from the impact that the Government’s diesel tax has had, sowing extra confusion among drivers who are holding off on replacing diesels."

In January, JLR said that it would cut production numbers at its Halewood plant due to slowing new car sales – something that a company spokesman linked to "concern around the future of petrol and diesel engines" and "general global economic and political uncertainty”.

JLR’s response to changing market demand is already under way, with its first purpose-built electric vehicle, the Jaguar I-Pace, due on roads this summer. The firm has pledged to produce an electrified variant of every model in its range by 2020 as it "works towards a cleaner future”.

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Comments
56

13 April 2018

JLR not mentioning the widespread issues with the diesel Ingenium in Evoque, Disco Sport and Disco 5 (as Autocar long term reviewer will verify).

Perhaps if they made a reliable diesel in their most popular, and profitable cars, they might not be cutting so many jobs. 

Sulphur Man

13 April 2018
Sulphur Man wrote:

JLR not mentioning the widespread issues with the diesel Ingenium in Evoque, Disco Sport and Disco 5 (as Autocar long term reviewer will verify).

Perhaps if they made a reliable diesel in their most popular, and profitable cars, they might not be cutting so many jobs. 

Only issue I know about is with some dodgy Borg Warner units from GERMANY that have killed a few engines. JLR are doing their nut with them apparantly. But not sure if that is the only issue.

13 April 2018
Sulphur Man wrote:

JLR not mentioning the widespread issues with the diesel Ingenium in Evoque, Disco Sport and Disco 5 (as Autocar long term reviewer will verify).

Perhaps if they made a reliable diesel in their most popular, and profitable cars, they might not be cutting so many jobs. 

Only issue I know about is with some dodgy Borg Warner units from GERMANY that have killed a few engines. JLR are doing their nut with them apparantly. But not sure if that is the only issue.

13 April 2018
TStag wrote:

Sulphur Man wrote:

JLR not mentioning the widespread issues with the diesel Ingenium in Evoque, Disco Sport and Disco 5 (as Autocar long term reviewer will verify).

Perhaps if they made a reliable diesel in their most popular, and profitable cars, they might not be cutting so many jobs. 

Only issue I know about is with some dodgy Borg Warner units from GERMANY that have killed a few engines. JLR are doing their nut with them apparantly. But not sure if that is the only issue.

The issue was that it wasn't ready for release. There was slip on the project, JLR ordered supply of the old unit to be switched off on a certain date and couldn't go back. Unkown to each of them, the customer carried out the final stages of development.

15 April 2018
TStag wrote:

Sulphur Man wrote:

JLR not mentioning the widespread issues with the diesel Ingenium in Evoque, Disco Sport and Disco 5 (as Autocar long term reviewer will verify).

Perhaps if they made a reliable diesel in their most popular, and profitable cars, they might not be cutting so many jobs. 

Only issue I know about is with some dodgy Borg Warner units from GERMANY that have killed a few engines. JLR are doing their nut with them apparantly. But not sure if that is the only issue.

 

This makes no sense.. Borg Warner what? Borg Warner is a company that makes many things.

16 April 2018
TStag wrote:

Sulphur Man wrote:

JLR not mentioning the widespread issues with the diesel Ingenium in Evoque, Disco Sport and Disco 5 (as Autocar long term reviewer will verify).

Perhaps if they made a reliable diesel in their most popular, and profitable cars, they might not be cutting so many jobs. 

Only issue I know about is with some dodgy Borg Warner units from GERMANY that have killed a few engines. JLR are doing their nut with them apparantly. But not sure if that is the only issue.

 

isnt Borg Warner american? They must be manufactured in Germany.

16 April 2018

The JLR engines way better than the crap 1.6 and 2 litre diesels that audi vw churn out

16 April 2018
Ski Kid wrote:

The JLR engines way better than the crap 1.6 and 2 litre diesels that audi vw churn out

Yeah they're not though are they. Noisy, unrefined and unreliable.

16 April 2018
Sulphur Man wrote:

JLR not mentioning the widespread issues with the diesel Ingenium in Evoque, Disco Sport and Disco 5 (as Autocar long term reviewer will verify).

Perhaps if they made a reliable diesel in their most popular, and profitable cars, they might not be cutting so many jobs. 

Or......... it could be the bad image created by dieselgate that have demonised diesels to the point that our government have cracked down on incentivising diesels via lower tax rates. There is a reason why sales have been down 12 month on the trott for everyone while diesels have dropped some 30-40%.

17 April 2018
Sulphur Man wrote:

JLR not mentioning the widespread issues with the diesel Ingenium in Evoque, Disco Sport and Disco 5 (as Autocar long term reviewer will verify).

Perhaps if they made a reliable diesel in their most popular, and profitable cars, they might not be cutting so many jobs. 

My ingenium engine has 45,000miles on the clock, is refined, gives great real-world economy and hasn't missed a beat since delivery. I imagine that Jaguars and Land Rovers compare badly with Japanese cars for engine reliability. Their main competition is German and I think they are just as reliable as BMW and Audi. Benz is more solid. Millions of taxi drivers aren't wrong.

Happy motoring

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