Jaguar Facing A Lot Of Ifs

Bertel Schmitt
by Bertel Schmitt
jaguar facing a lot of ifs

With more than 30 years of advertising under my belt, I’m no stranger to spin. Once in a while, I’m impressed by the gumption of some spinmeisters. This is one of those times.

So I read at Reuters that Jaguar is “ready to leap back to pre-crisis sales.” Reuters quotes Jaguar Land Rover’s head David Smith, who said: “In the past, Jaguar built more than 100,000 vehicles per year. We can return to such levels once the crisis is over.” Reuters says Smith gave those optimistic remarks to Germany’s Wirtschaftswoche.

So over to Wirtschaftswoche I go. At first, I think I found the wrong article.

“Jaguar Land Rover Sales Sink 30 Percent” says the headline in the Wirtschaftswoche. “In 2009, we sold 260,000 units, 65,000 of those Jaguars,” Smith is quoted as saying. Down 30 percent for the year. Well, the new XJ should make up for that, there are “already 3000 pre-orders.”

“We are faced with big challenges in the cost department,” says Smith. “Challenges” are manager-speak for problems. “We want to reduce the two factories in the Midlands to one,” he says. Uh-oh, he’s thinking about moving production to low-cost countries. Not to India, as many suspect, but maybe to China. “Without any redundancies” in the U.K., of course.

Then, the operative sentence: “If we make the right investments at the right times, and if we maximize our strengths, then we should be able to realize strong growth.”

That’s a lot of ifs.

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4 of 8 comments
  • Tstag Tstag on Jan 11, 2010

    So EXTREMELY high demand in China for an OVERTAXED product has nothing to do with wanting to make some cars in China... Sure JLR need to reduced costs but by as much as other car makers in Europe who made significantly higher losses during the recession? I think not....

  • Twotone Twotone on Jan 11, 2010

    "...and if we maximize our strengths, then we should be able to realize strong growth.” And what exactly are those "strengths"? Twotone

  • Ott Ott on Jan 11, 2010

    Ready to leap, yes. Able, no.

  • Ricky Spanish Ricky Spanish on Jan 11, 2010

    relying on the crisis to end is a poor business plan. they need to be able to survive DURING a crisis, only then will they be strong during periods of prosperity as well.