A special new facility set to open this month is expected to drive the future profits of Jaguar Land Rover – by calling on its history.
The new Jaguar Land Rover Classic Works centre at Oxford Road, Ryton will be the heart of all things Classic for Jaguar and Land Rover. Within this state-of –the art facility, everything from ground-up manufacturing to specialist service and maintenance will be offered to clients worldwide.
The Classic business sits alongside Special Vehicle Operations (SVO) in the Jaguar Land Rover Special Operations portfolio of brands. SVO is responsible for designing, engineering and assembling specialist new cars, and is expected to sell more than 5,000 vehicles in the forthcoming year.
Special Operations managing director John Edwards told 150 business leaders that its two divisions – Classic and SVO – would be crucial to adding value to the company in future years.
One of Classic’s latest ventures is full restorations of Series 1 Land Rovers, using donor vehicles hand-picked from around the world by authenticity experts which are then rebuilt to the original 1948 specification using genuine Land Rover Classic parts.
The SVO team recently delivered a personalised Range Rover SVAutobiography Dynamic to heavyweight world champion boxer Anthony Joshua.
Edwards was the keynote speaker at the Coventry & Warwickshire Champions meeting at Coombe Abbey, where he revealed the company’s growth plans.
Edwards said: “Special Operations represents a significant opportunity for Jaguar Land Rover based on incremental, added value and high margin business. Our products help to amplify and build on Jaguar Land Rover’s brand values.
“We are plugging into a demand for bespoke or limited edition models that are of the highest standard possible from a design and engineering perspective. They really are very special vehicles.
“This new Classic Works will be the largest purpose built classic facility in the world with 50 workshop bays, a 1000m² showroom, 480 vehicle storage spaces and a staff count of 90.”
Special Vehicle Operations designs and engineers ‘halo’ products focusing on luxury, performance and capability.
The SVO Technical Centre, opened in 2014 on Oxford Road, was a result of a £20m investment. The new commissioning suite allows vehicles to be personally customised.
Coventry & Warwickshire Champions hold bimonthly events which feature businesses, organisations and individuals across the area in a network designed to help develop and promote Coventry and Warwickshire.
Edwards was joined at the latest event by Robert Davies, divisional finance director of Liberty Vehicle Technologies, which has recently unveiled a new £10m centre of excellence at Leamington Spa, Tamsin Greenway, director of Wasps Netball, who has helped form the club and taken them to the top reaches of the Vitality Netball Superleague and June Picken, director of sales at Coombe Abbey Hotel– a CW Champions business.
Les Ratcliffe MBE, Chairman of Coventry & Warwickshire Champions, said: “As always this meeting was host to three fantastic speakers with a great story to tell. Champions meetings are about informing local business leaders of the developments and investments in Coventry and Warwickshire.
“We are attracting record numbers to these events and we’re proud to be promoting the good things happening in the region. Our Champions are the makers and shakers of Coventry and Warwickshire, when we get together things happen.”
Pictured: left to right: Nic Erskine (Coventry & Warwickshire Champions), Robert Davies, (Liberty Vehicle Technologies), June Picken (Coombe Abbey Hotel), John Edwards (Special Operations), David Shortland (Coventry & Warwickshire Champions Board).