JLR’s Jaguar XF cheaper by Rs 6.5 lakh on India assembly

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Tata Motors-owned Jaguar Land Rover has started assembling Jaguar XF salon in India to make it cheaper by Rs 6.5 lakh. The company has also doubled its headcount at its manufacturing plant in Pune.

“The locally-produced Jaguar XF salon at newly built Chakan facility near Pune has been shipped to the dealerships,” Del Sehmar, Jaguar Land Rover India spokesman told Financial Chronicle.

The local assembly has allowed the company to offer the premium saloon at Rs 44.5 lakh at showrooms in Mumbai to take on competition such as BMW 5 series, Audi A6 and the Mercedes-Benz E-Class. The company until now was importing the car from its three manufacturing plants in the UK.

The locally built Jaguar XF 2.2-litre diesel car comes with an array of standard features such as rear view camera, TV tuner, navigation system, front passenger seat away, touchscreen, gear shifting paddles, full size spare wheel, electric sunroof, rear screen electric blind and eight-speed automatic transmission.

“Jaguar is among the newer entrants in the Indian luxury car market and hence there’s a bit more exclusivity to their products. However, to become the best luxury brand in India by volume, local assembly and low priced variants of the current stable won’t be sufficient. Jaguar needs a smaller sedan that costs roughly half the price of the XF to draw closer to the Germans rivals,” Shrawan Raja, auto analyst and managing editor of IndianAutosBlog.com told Financial Chronicle.

Sehmar said at present Jaguar’s diesel and petrol XF variants with 3.0 litre and 5.0 litre engines are priced between Rs 51 lakh and over Rs 1 crore at showrooms in Mumbai. He said the Jaguar model in India featuring a 2.2 litre diesel engine for the first time at the entry price of Rs. 44.5 lakh was a better value proposition for the customers in the country.

The Jaguar XF is the second model to be locally assembled in Pune. In May 2011, Jaguar Land Rover started making the Land Rover Freelander 2 from the same assembly plant. The Jaguar product range in India includes the XF, XFR, XKR, XKR-S and XJ. For Land Rover, the product range includes the Freelander 2, Discovery 4, Range Rover Evoque, Range Rover Sport and a new Range Rover version.

With the sales rising, the company has more than doubled its headcount at the manufacturing plant in Pune. “We have expanded our operation and more than doubled our workforce from the initial 47 to over 120 at present,” Sehmar said.

“Our best-selling models in India are the Land Rover Freelander 2 and the Jaguar XF and this has driven the move to build these products locally,” Rohit Suri, vice-president at Jaguar Land Rover India said in a statement.

“We are now delighted to offer this car as a locally built product with a new engine for this market, which will enable us to provide our customers with a wider choice of competitively priced models,” he added.

Jaguar Land Rover India has reported 32 per cent growth in its sales in 2012 at 2,393 cars compared with 1,813 units in the previous year.

michaelgonsalves@mydigitalfc.com

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