Jaguar Has Announced a New Special Vehicles Division
If you’ve got a lot of money to spend, the next batch of exclusive Jags might be your best bet for a new ride. Jaguar Land Rover has announced a new Special Operations division, created to market to customers looking for a bit more flair and oomph in their next luxury car. It isn’t a new idea for JLR – makers of the specialty XKR-S GT and Land Rover Autobiography models – but merely an evolution in the process. The Special Operations division replaces the existing “Engineered To Order” program, and will head-up the development of high-performance vehicle variants, create bespoke modifications to customer cars, restore and service heritage vehicles, as well as extend new lines of branded goods.
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The man leading the charge is John Edwards – no, not the politician – former brand director for Land Rover. JLR has organized the Special Operations team to operate between two facilities. The first will be a new technical center located in the West Midlands of the UK, packing in F1-style flexible workshops, a fully automated paint facility, and 150 engineering specialists. Jaguar expects the center to be fully operational come 2015.
The second facility, Jaguar’s heritage workshop, will be created in Coventry, the spiritual home of the brand. This facility has already been earmarked to produce the six recently announced lightweight E-Type recreations and will allow the teams to get to work on older Jaguar restorations.
It’s a big step for the brand, but one that’s paid off for other luxury automakers. The AMG division has helped to provide services and fill gaps in the Mercedes-Benz lineup. The same can be said about BMW’s M division, so you can bet Jaguar will offer some stiff competition to this elite clubhouse.
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