Jaguar Land Rover unveils £250M Electric Vehicle Test and Innovation Hub Ignites Coventry's Future
Image credit: Jaguar Land Rover
Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) has unveiled its grand £250 million electric vehicle (EV) test and development hub in the heart of Coventry, marking a significant step forward in its ambitious goal to introduce nine pure electric luxury car models by 2030.
The impressive 323,000-square-foot Future Energy Lab, strategically located at JLR's renowned Whitley Engineering Centre, boasts a treasure trove of cutting-edge tech innovations valued at tens of millions of pounds. This treasure chest includes electric test rigs, advanced electric drive unit manufacturing technology, and state-of-the-art EV systems test cells, all designed to drive the future of mobility.
But that's not all; this avant-garde facility also features a series of extreme-weather climate chambers capable of simulating the harshest conditions, ranging from bone-chilling -40 degrees Celsius to sizzling 55 degrees Celsius. This climate prowess is set to amplify JLR's capabilities in testing and developing EVs significantly.
Over 200 dedicated EV engineers are already working in this high-tech haven, with plans to add another 150 brilliant minds to the roster soon. JLR's commitment to excellence is reflected in its planned £22 million investment slated for next year, further fortifying the Coventry site as a hub of innovation.
Oliver Boakes, the astute chief engineer overseeing powertrain test operations at JLR, eloquently described this new facility as yet another "jewel in the crown" of the automaker's electrifying journey. He emphasized the substantial investment's positive impact on the business and the local economy.
This formidable facility is a cornerstone of JLR's audacious £15 billion investment endeavor to electrify its luxury car lineup over the next five years. The much-anticipated Range Rover BEV, JLR's next electric marvel, is undergoing rigorous testing at this site, with hundreds of thousands of hours dedicated to ensuring its flawless debut next year.
Thomas Mueller, JLR's executive director of product engineering, said increasing capacity for testing EVs onsite would enable JLR to minimize the cost and emissions associated with sending fleets of prototype cars worldwide for test assessments.
"This facility, a core component of our Reimagine strategy, is essential to providing the advanced testing capabilities that will be vital to the performance and reliability of the modern luxury vehicles we are proudly developing," he added.
This groundbreaking development comes hot on the heels of Tata Group, JLR's parent company, sealing a meaningful deal with the UK government to establish its flagship £4 billion European electric car battery factory in the UK, following extensive negotiations and securing public funding support.
Furthermore, the collaboration between JLR and Wykes Engineering has made headlines with their visionary endeavor to create one of the UK's largest energy storage systems from recycled electric car batteries, demonstrating their commitment to sustainability and innovation.
Andy Street, the visionary Mayor of the West Midlands, lauded the expanded presence of JLR in Coventry as a testament to his unwavering vision to position the region as a leader in the electrifying transition of vehicle production.
"With the opening of this new Future Energy Lab in Coventry - a multi-million-pound investment in engineering - JLR are doubling down on their commitment to electrification in the months and years ahead," he said. "This announcement also means that local people stand to benefit hugely - equipping them with the skills they need to succeed in this sector and the employment opportunities to match."