Jaguar Land Rover is to become the first British carmaker to open a manufacturing facility in Brazil.
An agreement paving the way for construction of a plant in the Rio de Janeiro state has been signed by Phil Hodgkinson, global business expansion director of Jaguar Land Rover, and Sergio Cabral, state governor of Rio de Janeiro.
Jaguar Land Rover says its expansion into Brazil is the next major step in the company’s strategy to increase its global manufacturing footprint and create additional capacity.
Based in the City of Itatiaia, the new programme represents a total investment of R$750m (£240m) by 2020.
Construction of the manufacturing facility will commence in mid-2014 and it is anticipated that the first vehicles will come off the assembly line in 2016.
The plant will, with a capacity to build 24,000 vehicles annually, will initially employ almost 400 people, a number likely to almost double by the end of the decade. This new manufacturing facility will also create additional jobs across the local supply chain network.
Following a detailed feasibility study, Jaguar Land Rover selected the City of Itatiaia, close to the heart of the emerging Regional Automotive Zone, due to its logistics links, access to the local supplier base and skilled workforce.
So far in 2013, Jaguar Land Rover sales in Brazil have increased by more than 40 per cent to 9,549 vehicles over the 10 month period. The best-selling models in Brazil are Range Rover Evoque, Freelander and Discovery.