Car maker Rover has switched 800 workers from Longbridge and its other UK plants to its Oxford site, in preparation for the start of full-scale production of the new Rover 75 on 17 June.
The job switch brings the site’s workforce up to 2,700, and will allow production of the car to reach 1,660 units per week, operating on two shifts, rising to 2,800 cars per week by the end of the year.
BMW, Rover’s parent company, has spent £700m in developing the Rover 75, including £290m on the Oxford site. The investment includes a £75m body-in-white facility using 170 robots, an £80m paint shop and a £50m trim and final assembly area.
The 16-model range will cost between £19,530 and £26,630 in the UK. Rover aims to export 70% of the cars to 120 markets worldwide.