Transitioning from gas to electric vehicles is expensive. For some automakers, it’s more than they have sitting around. Jaguar Land Rover has just gotten some help from The Crown with its own electrification plans. A loan guarantee worth 500 million pounds.
Earlier this month, Jaguar Land Rover announced big plans to electrify. Announcing first that its flagship XJ sedan would be ending production in gasoline and diesel forms, with an electric model set to debut later this year.
JLR also said that it would be building electric vehicles at its Castle Bromwich plant, located in the UK and keeping production there. The plant would have battery assembly capacity for up to 150,000 units annually.
Now, Bloomberg reports, Jaguar Land Rover has received a loan guarantee to help fund the project. They’re saying that PM Theresa May made the announcement at a round-table meeting last week. There is a guarantee from the U.K. Export Finance agency. Worth £500 million, or around $812 million. The loan guarantee was made to support the design, manufacture, and export of electric cars, Bloomberg reports May as saying.
The news of the guarantee, and of the plans for Castle Bromwich, were good news for the brands and their employees. Jaguar Land Rover had launched a £2.5B turnaround plan last year as an effort to maintain company finances. It included plans to trim 4,500 staff as vehicle sales fell sharply in China. Dropping that market by 34 percent for JLR. Slowing demand for diesel vehicle sales has also hurt the company, especially the primarily SUV Land Rover brand. It’s also good news for the British auto industry as a whole, which has been suffering a run of bad news since the announcement of Brexit.
Currently, the company offers only one electric model. The Jaguar I-Pace crossover, built by Magna in Austria.