All new Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) vehicle lines will be electric or hybrid from 2020, the luxury carmaker has revealed.
Like a growing number of its rivals, JLR has joined the electric vehicle race with plans to release for sale, in a year’s time, its Jaguar I-PACE sports car now being built at production facilities in Austria.
The manufacturer did not say when it would be ending production of petrol or diesel-only vehicles entirely. But after 2020, all its new models will have an electrical component.
The announcement comes two months after Volvo said all its models will have an electric motor two years from now – so they will either be pure electric cars or hybrids that combine electric and conventional engines.
Three weeks later, the Government confirmed plans to ban the sale of new diesel and petrol cars in the UK from 2040 – with the aim of getting them off the roads altogether by 2050.
JLR chief executive Ralf Speth said the move towards electric cars would give customers greater choice, but signalled the company was not planning on ceasing production of petrol and diesel cars anytime soon.
“We will introduce a portfolio of electrified products across our model range, embracing fully electric, plug-in hybrid and mild hybrid vehicles,” he said.
He told Sky News: “Petrol and diesel engines will continue. The internal combustion engine is not at an end. We have to do both, we have to refine the internal combustion engine and simultaneously research and develop even more competitive petro-electric vehicles.
“At the end of the day, the banning of petrol and diesel cars announced for 2040 gives a direction. But it’s also quiet clear that at the moment there are no better engines than the petrol and diesel.”
JLR, which is owned by Indian conglomerate, employs 40,000 people worldwide.
Latest figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders show 71,497 new alternatively fuelled vehicles have been bought in the UK so far this year.
This represents a market share of 4.4%, up from 3.2% last year.
Sky’s Business Presenter Ian King said: “A lot of people will say that Jaguar Land Rover have come late to the electric vehicle party.
“But JLR is clearly confident that the design of its vehicles will ensure it grabs a significant chunk of this important market.
“Today’s announcement also, however, serves as a reminder that Britain, as a country, seriously needs to start preparing for the electric future.
“Generation capacity will need to be increased and charging infrastructure built up. This is going to be a challenge for local, as well as national, government – not to mention the energy industry.”