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Special Vehicle Ops boosted by JLR

View to a thrill: JLR’s new Special Vehicle Operations facility will have a viewing area for customers to watch their car being built.

Employee boost as JLR’s SVO targets four new models in four years

8 Jul 2016

JAGUAR Land Rover (JLR) has given its Special Vehicle Operations (SVO) division a £20 million (A$34.5m) investment boost as it targets the production of four new halo sportscars in four years.

A new headquarters in the British Midlands – shared with Jaguar Land Rover Classic that scored its own £7.5m (AU$13m) boost – accommodated the majority of the investment and will house 250 new employees, an increase of 25 per cent.

In addition to the 20,000-square metre Coventry facility’s manufacturing, paint and technical build areas dedicated to SVO production, a commissioning suite and viewing area for customers will feature “experts (who) will guide customers through the design and creation of their new vehicles.”

JLR’s SVO division has by its own admission developed an “ambitious growth strategy” that will see its model portfolio more than double before 2020.

“The vision for Special Vehicle Operations is to launch one new SVO car every year, on average, for at least the next four years,” confirmed JLR SVO managing director John Edwards.

“Our business plans are driven by the desire for ‘halo’ vehicles and other exclusive products from customers in all corners of the globe.

“The (SVO) team is energetic, enthusiastic and entrepreneurial. They are the principal reason that we have made a strong start in business since 2014.

“Now we have new facilities, technologies, products and services in place to exceed the demands of our most discerning customers all over the world. I look forward to strengthening our team and delivering on this fantastic opportunity.”

Two years following its creation in 2014, JLR’s SVO division has more than 1000 employees and in the 2015/16 financial year sales volume totalled 3600 units.

The Range Rover Sport SVR and Range Rover SVAutobiography have notched up respective Australian sales of 32 and nine units during the first half of 2016.

The Sport SVR was expected to sell five units per month but JLR Australia has revised that figure to seven per month.

The Jaguar F-Type SVR will launch locally in September 2016, while 10 units of the Jaguar F-Type Project 7 were sold Down Under priced from $339,610 plus on-road costs.

Contenders highly tipped for the SVR treatment include the Range Rover Evoque, Jaguar XE and Jaguar XF, which would respectively rival the forthcoming Mercedes-AMG GLC 63 coupe, current C63 sedan and next E63 among other models from BMW’s M and Audi’s RS divisions.

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