Jaguar Land Rover motors ahead with 40 new models

Bullish Jaguar Land Rover is to embark on its most ambitious product offensive ever — with no fewer than 40 new models planned over the next five years.

Bullish Jaguar Land Rover is to embark on its most ambitious product offensive ever — with no fewer than 40 new models planned over the next five years.

The West Midlands firm wants to capitalise on the spiralling demand for its cars in emerging markets, particularly China and Japan. Bosses from each arm of the firm outlined their bold plans at their packed stand at the Geneva Motor Show. While details of the new cars were being kept under wraps for now, JLR bosses pledged to create 1,000 new jobs.

This is in addition to the 1,500 staff they are recruiting for their Halewood plant on Merseyside.

The firm already employs nearly 14,000 at its five West Midland plants in Solihull, Castle Bromwich, Gaydon, Whitley and Coventry.

Land Rover's global brand director John Edwards said the firm would continue to launch stylish, efficient and technologically-advanced vehicles like the eagerly-awaited new Range Rover Evoque.

The car will not arrive in showrooms until the summer but has already won best production car in this year's Car Design of the Year awards.

Such has been the interest in the car that Mr Edwards predicted it would become the firm's best seller. "We are a business with momentum and ambition. These are exciting times for Land Rover," he told showgoers.

Jaguar, meanwhile, will get new models and a smaller, more fuel-efficient four-cylinder diesel engine for the XF range.

Jaguar global brand director Adrian Hallmark said several new products in the pipeline would help the firm "realise its full potential" in the coming years. JLR sales were up by 20 per cent across the group last year and its models won some 80 international awards.

Other announcements included a pledge from Ford to launch no fewer than 20 new models over the next three years. It also unveiled its unusually-styled new small people carrier, the B-Max.

VW unveiled a people carrier concept called the Bulli, which brings the retro looks of its iconic camper van to a vehicle the size of a Polo.

Also unveiled at the show were new SUV concepts from Renault and SEAT, which will be keen to launch a production version of its sporty-looking IBX.