As further proof that China is really the world's biggest car market today, British automotive company Jaguar Land Rover has inaugurated its first overseas manufacturing facility as part of a joint venture with the Chery Automobile Company.
Located in the Changshu Economic Development Zone north of Shanghai, the 400,000sqm facility will initially produce the Range Rover Evoque exclusively for the Chinese market.
"The opening of this world-class facility is an important milestone for Jaguar Land Rover," said Jaguar Land Rover chief executive officer Ralf Speth. "Since its launch, one in five Range Rover Evoques have been sold in China. Our decision to manufacture the Range Rover Evoque in Changshu is a result of our commitment to bringing more Chinese vehicles to Chinese customers."
By 2016, the plant is expected to produce three Jaguar Land Rover models and have a total production capacity of 130,000 units a year. In addition, a new aluminum body shop--reportedly the first in China--is already under construction in the same facility "to support the introduction of new Jaguar products."
Inaugural sales of the China-made Range Rover Evoque will start in early 2015.