Up to 230 engineering and design jobs at MG Motor Ltd's parent company, SAIC, are at risk due to plans to radically downsize its technical centre in at the site of the former Longbridge factory in Birmingham.
News of the plan leaked out after a consultation with the workforce on Friday, with one source suggesting that 140 full-time jobs and 90 contractor positions are at risk out of a total workforce of around 300, whose main function is designing and engineering new models for MG.
MG Motor, which is owned by SAIC, wouldn’t comment on the numbers, instead it issued a statement confirming that talks were underway with the workforce at the SAIC Motor UK Technical Centre (SMTC). The Longbridge site is also registered with Companies House as MG's UK headquarters.
“SMTC is conducting an operational review at its Birmingham base,” it said, “and is currently consulting with its staff to find the most appropriate solution and further updates will be issued in due course.”
The ZS EV is a key model in MG’s plan to significantly boost UK sales by the end of 2020, making the cutbacks at its technical centre more difficult for the workforce.
UK sales have been on a steep climb and doubled last year to 9049 units compared to 4440 in 2017. While sales in China improved considerably last year as well, hitting 134k against 80k in 2017.
A fresh sales push is being built around a expanding UK dealer network that currently numbers 91 sites, but is planned to grow to 120 by the end of 2020.