JLR to set up new Rs 1,000 crore R&D centre in the UK
September 25, 2013: Jaguar Land Rover has announced that it will set up a new £100 million (Rs 1,004 crore) research and development centre in 2016.
Based at Warwick University, the advanced research centre will become a development hub for next-generation vehicle technologies. The National Automotive Innovation Campus will be used to develop new technologies for electric cars, inter-vehicle connectivity and Human Machine Interface designs.
Around 1,000 academics, technologists and engineers will work in the building, with almost half of those being part of JLR's advanced research team. Almost 200 JLR researchers and engineers are already based at Warwick University. The facility will feature engineering workshops and laboratories, advanced powertrain facilities and the latest advanced design, visualisation and rapid prototyping technologies.
JLR is the lead partner in the project and is bearing half of the £100 million cost, with Tata Motors European Technical Centre, Warwick Manufacturing Group and the UK government's Higher Education Funding Council also having vested interests.
The aim of the centre, says JLR, is to bring together academics, researchers and engineers from across the country to create the next generation of vehicle technologies. Head of research for the company Antony Harper said: "These collaborative research programmes will harness the best of UK engineering innovation, and with the extra capability the NAIC gives us, you can expect the number and range of new, fresh innovative ideas that we patent, and then take to production in the future, to increase significantly”.
The site will also be used to encourage school children and students to consider careers in engineering and the automotive sector, already named as a key goal of the recently announced UK government initiative, of which JLR is a partner. The plan, dubbed ‘See Inside Manufacturing’ aims to plug a 100,000-person strong skills gap in the UK automotive industry. JLR, BMW, Ford and McLaren are among the manufacturers backing the plan.