Jaguar Land Rover and BMW announce joint electric car plans

BMW and Jaguar Land Rover will co-develop electric car powertrains in order to keep costs down

Jaguar I-PACE Global Drive, Portugal, 2018

Jaguar Land Rover and BMW have announced that they will co-develop electric powertrains for their next generation of electric cars.

The move will allow both companies to save money by sharing costs and boosting their economies of scale, making parts and materials cheaper to buy.

It means future electric vehicles from both groups will feature the same electric motors: the BMW iX3 is set to become the first to use the technology when it goes on sale in 2020.

“The pace of change and consumer interest in electrified vehicles is gathering real momentum and it’s essential we work across industry to advance the technologies required to deliver this exciting future,” said Nick Rogers, Jaguar Land Rover’s engineering director.

“We’ve proven we can build world-beating electric cars but now we need to scale the technology to support the next generation of Jaguar and Land Rover products.”

BMW board member Klaus Fröhlich agreed, saying: “With Jaguar Land Rover, we found a partner whose requirements for the future generation of electric drive units significantly match ours.

“Together, we have the opportunity to cater more effectively for customer needs by shortening development time and bringing vehicles and state-of-the-art technologies more rapidly to market.”

The joint venture between the two groups is particularly significant for JLR, which is a relatively small player in the car manufacturing business but has hit the ground running in the electric car segment.

The all-electric Jaguar I-Pace was revealed last year and the SUV has enjoyed huge success since, winning the 2019 World Car of the Year award and several other prizes besides.

Meanwhile, BMW continues to periodically update the i3 city car - first launched in 2013 - but is in danger of being left behind by German rivals that have been faster bringing full electric projects to market.

The company is essentially giving JLR access to its massive buying power in return for the expertise shown by the team that engineered the I-Pace.

We believe that JLR and BMW will share office space, possibly somewhere in Germany. However, both groups will manufacture their jointly-developed powertrains separately from one another.

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