Jaguar opens new engine plant in the UKThu, 30 Oct 2014 16:30:00 EST
The heads of Jaguar Land Rover are having a busy couple of weeks opening factories. Just days after inaugurating the company's first overseas plant in China, the automaker's new Engine Manufacturing Center in the UK is being inaugurated, as well. The plant near Wolverhampton, England, marks the first time in decades that JLR is building its own powerplants in-house. Further signaling the importance of this launch for the business, Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip were on hand and even tweeted about it.
The factory's first major project is to build JLR's latest Ingenium four-cylinders, starting with the 2.0-liter diesel version. "Our new Engine Manufacturing Centre is an important step in advancing the competitiveness and capability of the UK automotive sector. The production of in-house engines will support the expansion of the UK supply chain providing critical mass for inward investment," said Trevor Leeks, plant operations director in the automaker's announcement.
Opening the doors to the Engine Manufacturing Center has been years in the making for JLR. The plant was first announced in September 2011 and broke ground in June 2012. Building it cost the company 500 million pounds ($800 million) and created 1,400 new jobs. Of course, being a state-of-the-art factory, considerations were made to make the place as energy efficient as possible. That meant installing the UK's largest solar array with 21,000 panels to produce about 30 percent of the site's electricity needs.
This isn't even the end of JLR's continued construction. The company's Special Vehicles Operations team is getting its own new facility in England. The automaker is even rumored to be considering one in the US. Scroll down to read the business's full release about the engine plant's opening.
A GREAT DAY FOR BRITISH INDUSTRY AS JAGUAR LAND ROVER OPENS ITS ENGINE MANUFACTURING CENTRE
Britain's leading premium automotive manufacturer officially opens the doors to its new world-class Engine Manufacturing Centre.
Jaguar Land Rover brings engine manufacturing in-house for the first time in a generation.
The new £500m Engine Manufacturing Centre cements Jaguar Land Rover's position as the UK's leading automotive investor.
Facility supports regional regeneration with 1,400 jobs created.
Jaguar Land Rover today marked a seminal moment in its history with the official opening of its new Engine Manufacturing Centre. The £500m facility, announced in September 2011, represents a significant step in Jaguar Land Rover's strategic investment programme and will see engines being produced in-house for the first time in a generation.
Located near Wolverhampton in the West Midlands, the Engine Manufacturing Centre is home to the Ingenium engine family which will power a new generation of Jaguar Land Rover products designed, engineered and manufactured in the UK. This starts with the 2.0-litre diesel, which rolls off the production line early next year, destined for the new Jaguar XE.
Commenting on the opening Dr. Ralf Speth said: "The Engine Manufacturing Centre represents all that is great about British engineering.
"Jaguar Land Rover is a business driven by design, technology and innovation and this investment and level of job creation is yet further evidence of our commitment to advancing the capability of the UK automotive sector and its supply chain."
With a vision to set a new global benchmark for excellence in engine manufacturing, Jaguar Land Rover is drawing on the expertise of 2,000 powertrain engineers who have been inspired by the company's 70-year heritage in the design and development of iconic engines. These engineers, together with the new 1,400 strong team at the Engine Manufacturing Centre, will deliver the next generation of highly efficient, ultra-low emission 4-cylinder petrol and diesel engines.
Jaguar Land Rover broke ground on the i54 Business Park site in June 2012. Today, the 100,000 square metre, state-of-the-art facility, houses an engine-testing centre alongside manufacturing and assembly halls, and meets the highest standards of sustainable production.
Awarded a rating of 'excellent' by BREEAM, for sustainable buildings, the facility is home to the largest rooftop solar panel installation in the UK, comprising no fewer than 21,000 individual panels. It is estimated that these panels will generate more than 30% of the plant's energy requirements - providing the same amount of energy required to power 1,600 homes.
Commenting on the importance of the Engine Manufacturing Centre, Trevor Leeks, Operations Director at the site said: "I am proud to be leading the world-class team who will bring years of hard work to fruition as we execute the flawless launch of Jaguar Land Rover's first in-house engines in a generation.
"Our new Engine Manufacturing Centre is an important step in advancing the competitiveness and capability of the UK automotive sector. The production of in-house engines will support the expansion of the UK supply chain providing critical mass for inward investment."
By Chris Bruce
See also: Jaguar Land Rover opens first overseas factory in China, Jaguar Land Rover opens first overseas factory in China, Jaguar Land Rover in talks for Southern US factory.