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5 July 2019, 08:59
Jaguar Land Rover is to build a range of electric cars in the UK, safeguarding thousands of jobs and delivering a huge boost to the industry after a series of setbacks in recent months.
Investment will be made at the firm's factory in Castle Bromwich, West Midlands, with other sites and supply companies benefitting from the development.
An all-electric version of the Jaguar XJ sedan replacement will be the first new battery-powered vehicle, followed by others.
The Castle Bromwich plant will close for six weeks so new equipment can be installed.
The investment follows an agreement for employees to work a four-day week as part of restructuring plans.
#LISTEN: "Without this investment Castle Bromwich would effectively be dead."@dgbailey's been speaking to #HeartNews after @JLR_News announced they will build a range of electric cars - safeguarding thousands of jobs in the #WestMidlands. pic.twitter.com/0ZjDSN9BhJ— Heart West Midlands News (@HeartWMidsNews) July 5, 2019
The plant, near the M6 in Birmingham, employs around 2,500 workers.
Batteries for the new electric XJ will be made in Hams Hall, Warwickshire, while the electric motors will be manufactured at JLR's engine plant near Wolverhampton.
Dr Ralph Speth, chief executive of JLR, said: "The future of mobility is electric and as a visionary British company, we are committed to making our next generation of zero-emission vehicles in the UK."
The Government and union leaders welcomed the news as a "fantastic boost" to the car industry.