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Jaguar Land Rover Expansion Includes New U.S. Winter Test Facility


2013 Jaguar XF

2013 Jaguar XF

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Luxury manufacturer Jaguar Land Rover has had a busy year. In addition to debuting the eagerly-awaited F-Type roadster, the company has announced new design centers for the United States and China, signed a production deal with Chinese auto giant Chery, and laid the framework for a possible factory in Saudi Arabia.

Now the brand has announced a new winter testing facility in International Falls, Minnesota, long infamous for being one of the coldest locations in the Continental United States. Winter temperatures can drop as low as -55 Fahrenheit, allowing Jaguar Land Rover to test its products under extreme “worst case” scenarios.

The winter testing facility, now open, includes testing chambers, snow-packed test surfaces and even a frozen lake. It also helps Jaguar and Land Rover optimize products for harsh winter conditions encountered by customers in Northern climates.

The announcement comes on the heels of Jaguar’s “Instinctive All Wheel Drive” product launch. While Land Rover and Range Rover products have long been known for their superior all-weather traction, Jaguar’s last all-wheel drive vehicle was the X-Type, designed under Ford’s ownership and dropped after the 2010 model year.

While Jaguar XF and XJ models are currently available with all-wheel drive, rumor has it that all Jaguar models may get optional AWD in the future. Such a move would make sense, as it would broaden the luxury marque’s appeal among buyers in snow belt states.
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