Jaguar Land Rover’s boss has reiterated the firm’s intention to close one of its UK manufacturing bases, despite speculation that the recent return to profitability could keep all three of the factories open.
Daily newspapers have claimed that JLR has decided to reverse its decision to close either Solihull or Castle Bromwich, persuaded by a pre-tax profit of £32m for the year to March after huge losses in 2009.
But speaking to Autocar this morning, Tata Motors CEO Carl-Peter Forster stated that JLR still plans to close either of the factories by the middle of this decade. "The previous management made that decision [to close one of the plants]; we see no reason to change it," he said.
"It’s simple: one large plant is considerably more efficient than two small ones," he added. "Our intention is to provide jobs for the existing workforce but I can’t count on it."
Forster, who was appointed in February, is currently reviewing all of Jaguar Land Rover’s business, manufacturing and product lines. He stated that he will choose which of the two plants to close only when that process is concluded.