It was two years ago that Jaguar Land Rover announced a partnership with Chery to establish a new production facility in China. Production at the new facility finally commenced this week, with the first model produced there being the Land Rover Range Rover Evoque. This is the first time that one of the British automaker’s vehicles has been produced outside of the U.K., if you don’t include the complete knock-down kits previously assembled in India.
In the previous financial year, Jaguar Land Rover sold more than 100,000 vehicles in China, making it the automaker’s single biggest market. By 2016, the facility is expected to be building three Jaguar Land Rover models with total production capacity of 130,000 units a year. Expect to see the Land Rover Discovery Sport produced at the plant and possibly a Jaguar sedan.
The facility is located in the Changshu Economic Development Zone north of Shanghai and will soon be joined by a new aluminum body shop (China’s first) as well as an engine plant. Once fully operational, output from facility will include new derivatives and models specially designed for the Chinese market.
At present, all vehicles produced at the facility will be sold in the Chinese market only. Further details regarding Jaguar Land Rover’s plans for the Chinese market will be announced at the 2014 Guangzhou Auto Show getting underway on November 20.