Jaguar has announced a new mission to crash land on the far side of the moon. The bold experiment will enable Jaguar to analyze where and how the resulting dust and debris settles in a zero-gravity environment. The remnants of Jaguar the corporation will be scattered across the lunar surface, exposed to the harsh realities of space-time. The latter is a metaphor for Jaguar’s unimaginative re-imagination plan, a plan to turn Jaguar into a low-volume manufacturer of luxury electric cars. Jaguar has become an aging rock star trying to stay relevant to its equally aging audience while desperately doing all it can to appeal to a younger crowd.
The re-imagination plan is nothing more than a cost-cutting exercise. Jaguar executives have probably not imagined how a factory floor worker will feel when his/her job is made redundant. Of course, the automotive media, the established media as Martin says, is on board with the message of helping Jaguar sell this controlled demolition. The media will bemoan the loss of British jobs caused by economic factors but ignore it when it’s aligned with their own economic interest.
Jaguar currently builds 161,000 cars per year, how many are sold is a mystery. The re-imagine plan will reduce that annual rate of production to 50,000 units per year. I imagine a lot of jobs will be lost. In various media interviews executives have admitted they have yet to run any production prototypes. And they intend to have a production-ready luxury electric car on sale in two years from now? I smell something and it isn’t an electric car lined in luxury leather.
Another area of concern is investment. Jaguar has earmarked £1BN for research and development split over three luxury EV models. Sounds like a lot, but not nearly enough when you consider the fact that Tesla spends over £3BN every year on R&D alone. Rivian is probably a better example, the company has an annual R&D budget of over £1.5BN.
Nonetheless, the first of this new breed of Jaguar cars will spawn into a £100,000 luxury EV with a range of 430 miles. How can Jaguar reveal range figures when they are not even testing prototypes out in the real world?
Knowing Jaguar, they will cut costs and modify the Jaguar I-Pace platform which is a re-imagination that makes financial sense. Of course, Jaguar will not admit as much because they are too bloody proud. The re-imagination plan is nothing more than a final countdown sequence to the controlled demolition of Jaguar Cars. Jaguar’s glory days are long gone, it ended in the late 1960s.
Chinese car manufacturers transitioning to electric cars are way ahead of the West. The Chinese are coming with superior EV products, and in the end, consumers will decide Jaguar’s fate. The aging rock star with the spiky dip-dyed blonde hair and a facelift will recede into the background and slowly fade into irrelevance.