Aston Martin could be facing a potential ‘face-palm’ moment if it approves a second production facility to be built in the US state of Alabama. The decision to open a production hub in the USA is the “obvious choice” so says the CEO Andy Palmer. But will Aston lose its British-ness by doing so?
Palmer is being pragmatic, the current facility in Gaydon, England makes all Aston Martins and at a stretch production could be boosted to 15,000 units per year from its current 4,000 units.
Palmer is targeting the US and Chinese markets and plans to build the DBX crossover at the Alabama facility if his plans are given the green-light by the board. A decision will be made before the end of the year.
So why is Andy Palmer committed to building Aston Martins in the USA? The decision is strategic, Alabama is offering tax incentives and the location is near to where Mercedes builds its SUVs.
Daimler, the parent company of Mercedes, has a 5 percent stake in Aston Martin, and will supply the British company with electronic components and next generation V8 engines.
Aston Martin plans to build the DBX in kit form at its Gaydon HQ and then ship the parts out to Alabama. The DBX will launch in 2019 and will be based on the crossover concept revealed at the Geneva Auto Show in March.
Aston Martin wants to increase annual sales from its current 4,000 to 15,000 cars annually by 2019, the DBX will form the backbone of this strategy.