F-Type ( X152 ) 2014 - Onwards

Economist article on Tata

 
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Old 03-12-2019, 08:21 PM
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Default Economist article on Tata

https://www.economist.com/business/2...its-own-making
paywall so pardon me if I copy/paste:

Tata to the rescue:
Jaguar Land Rover is in a hole mostly of its own making

But the maker of upmarket SUVs looks fixable

Print edition | Business

Feb 16th 2019




Range rovers, the pricey range-topping models from Jaguar Land Rover (jlr), flaunt interiors swagged in leather and wood. Such opulence distracts attention from the car’s capability as a rugged off-roader, as adept at driving up a mountainside as gliding around the smartest part of town. jlr’s ability to haul itself out of the mire is also about to undergo a serious test.

After a string of quarterly losses, on February 7th jlr revealed another, of £273m ($351m) in the latest three-month period. On top of that there was a whopping asset write-down, of £3.1bn. In the immediate aftermath, shares in its parent company, Tata Motors, which is the carmaking arm of the Indian conglomerate, collapsed by 18% and have now fallen by 60% in the past year. Tata Motors relies on jlr for about 80% of its sales and all of its profits. Despite the blow, Natarajan Chandrasekaran, chairman of Tata Group as well as the car division, says his company is committed to jlrand determined to turn it around.

It would not be the first turnaround. When Tata acquired jlr from Ford in 2008 it was close to bankruptcy. Since then sales have tripled, to over 600,000 cars a year in 2017. Profits have rolled in. But Ralf Speth, a former bmw executive hired to lead jlr on a route to catch its German rivals, may in recent years have gone too far, too fast. He pushed to sell 1m cars a year to help spread the costs of developing future technology.

jlr hit the brakes in 2018. Sales volumes fell by 5% worldwide in the 12 months to December, after plummeting in China at the end of the year (see chart) as the slowing economy put off buyers and Jaguar’s relationship with its dealers in the country deteriorated. The company now faces an array of problems. Its best market continues to collapse and it is reliant on increasingly unpopular diesel engines (which power the vast majority of its cars in Europe). Add to that the threat of American tariffs and a hard Brexit and the near future looks worrisome.

Brexit and trade wars are out of jlr's hands. Its huge bet on diesel engines and its poor handling of its Chinese dealers were not. The latter had to sell cars at a loss to meet stiff sales targets or keep them on forecourts—and have since refused to hold ever-growing inventories. jlr’s woes also owe much to its overambition. Mr Speth spent freely and costs have soared.

In going for growth jlr now spends too much making too many models for a carmaker of its size. Range Rovers are popular and the Evoque has been an unexpected success but the new Discovery and Velar have performed poorly. What to do with Jaguar is another conundrum. In the recent past the brand has probably never made an annual profit (Tata Motors does not break out figures). Mr Speth’s decision to invest in upmarket saloon cars, a contracting part of the market where the Germans have a stranglehold, looks a costly mistake. The xe and xf have never sold well. Mr Speth himself “may need to take responsibility for what’s gone wrong” says Robin Zhu of Bernstein, an equity-research firm.

Tata, nevertheless, remains committed to the management that turned jlr from near bankruptcy to become the world’s fourth-largest luxury car brand. It plans to cut costs by £2.5bn over the next 18 months and will axe 4,500 jobs (around a tenth of the workforce) on top of 1,500 job losses announced in 2018. That should turn its cashflow positive by 2020-21, according to Tata.

The Indian group’s judgment that jlr is a good business that will recover, seems sound. Tata may have washed its hands of Corus, another ailing British acquisition, putting the steelmaker into a joint venture with ThyssenKrupp of Germany last year, but it sees jlr as an important bet on new technology and thus the future. Jaguar may need to rethink what sort of cars it makes but Range Rover is among the most profitable brands in the business and updated models arriving in the next few years will give the firm a boost. If it can get through the next year, then concentrate on expensive suvs, jlr should get back on track.This article appeared in the Business section of the print edition under the headline "Tata to the rescue"

 
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Old 03-13-2019, 04:14 AM
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They were on the right track and fumbled the ball.
 
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Old 03-13-2019, 09:30 AM
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Originally Posted by jaguny View Post
They were on the right track and fumbled the ball.
Sad, but true.
 
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Old 03-13-2019, 10:02 AM
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The Land Rover side of the business will survive, the Jaguar side maybe not.
 
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Old 03-13-2019, 11:21 AM
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The Jaguar side of the business were rather slow in getting into the SUV market, one assumes because the Land Rover side of the business had that covered. However lack of an SUV to sell at the dealers means trouble for them as customers drive past their showroom on the way to the local Land Rover dealer or other marques that are selling SUVs. However, Jaguar now have two SUV models to sell, the E-Pace and the F-Pace, and both are apparently selling well. The market mania for what I call "double-decker buses" has made it difficult to sell "normal" cars.
 
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Old 03-13-2019, 02:30 PM
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And yet, this morning's JaguarForum headline is best USA February in JLR history. Clearly some models are selling extremely well while others are languishing. I guess that may have to be the case. You can't have all winners. But I do think with stronger management the weaker selling models could be much improved. I had a XF 2.5t loaner last week and although the basics of the car were ok, it was just not appealingly executed. Nothing about it said , Buy Me. And here on this forum, Jaguar has the best looking production car in the world and the sales sure don't reflect that. A reading of the threads suggests its a lack of attention to detail.
 
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Old 03-13-2019, 05:40 PM
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I would be careful about making lofty claims like "best looking production car in the world..." etc. F-type is pretty, no doubt, but there are plenty of Italian cars that look better. Hell, even my Lotus Evora was prettier and more striking.
 
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Old 03-13-2019, 06:10 PM
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Originally Posted by xxaarraa View Post
I would be careful about making lofty claims like "best looking production car in the world..." etc. F-type is pretty, no doubt, but there are plenty of Italian cars that look better. Hell, even my Lotus Evora was prettier and more striking.
All subjective.
 
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Old 03-13-2019, 07:27 PM
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Old 03-13-2019, 07:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Suaro View Post
The simplicity is what is lost on hypercars. And cars not mentioned that may deserve a nod for bold moves into the future: Volvo and Lincoln.
But some of those cars are wild!
Anyhooo.... as mentioned, aesthetics is subjective.
But #1 feels lovely.
 
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Old 03-13-2019, 09:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Noshame View Post
All subjective.
True. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but im guessing we get far more compliments on our cars than do the Evora owners.
 
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Old 03-13-2019, 09:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Uncle Fishbits View Post
The simplicity is what is lost on hypercars. And cars not mentioned that may deserve a nod for bold moves into the future: Volvo and Lincoln.
But some of those cars are wild!
Anyhooo.... as mentioned, aesthetics is subjective.
But #1 feels lovely.
I’m sorry, but that car would look even better without the body colored running boards.
 
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Old 03-13-2019, 10:05 PM
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Originally Posted by xxaarraa View Post
I would be careful about making lofty claims like "best looking production car in the world..." etc. F-type is pretty, no doubt, but there are plenty of Italian cars that look better. Hell, even my Lotus Evora was prettier and more striking.
how'd you like that evora? i sold my XF in preparation for buying a new F Type R but the evora 400 has caught my eye, maybe a 2017. comfortable enough to use as a DD? reliable with that camry engine even with a supercharger bolted on? thanks
 
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Old 03-13-2019, 10:16 PM
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Originally Posted by uclabrruin1989 View Post
how'd you like that evora? i sold my XF in preparation for buying a new F Type R but the evora 400 has caught my eye, maybe a 2017. comfortable enough to use as a DD? reliable with that camry engine even with a supercharger bolted on? thanks
I sold my 2017 in 3 months. Most beautiful and exotic car I have ever owned, but absolute pile of garbage as far as build quality goes. Door seals leak, car takes water every time its washed or it rains, rusts inside out, seat bottoms untuck, panels don't fit right. Lotus does not keep any parts in stock, does not have a dealer inventory and parts management system and even simple things like seats are 8-10 weeks out. Wiring is absolutely hysterical, with frequent ground faults and random codes thrown by nearly every sensor on the car. I had a OBD2 scanner permanently in the car to clear codes on a daily basis. That's before you get to the major mechanical issues with the IPS auto tranny. There is a single component that is not Toyota made and that's the actuator motor and range sensor unit and Lotus managed to **** that up. Car would repeatedly randomly stall and go into limp mode. And Lotus the company is run by retards. They don't honor warranty claims, factory doesn't work on Fridays.

They are an absolute example of shoddy home made British workmanship and a company that should have gone out of business long long ago, or stuck to making $30k track toys. Big professional corporations like Tata or Geely buying these boutique British shops is a blessing. And I would take made in China over made in England every day of the week. English build quality is a joke, always been that way. They should stick to bodywork and suspension setup and let the adults do the manufacturing.

What else would you like to know?
 

Last edited by xxaarraa; 03-13-2019 at 10:22 PM.
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Old 03-13-2019, 10:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Noshame View Post
All subjective.
People always say that and it makes me laugh. Not really. Beauty when it comes to automotive bodywork is more objective and less subjective than people think. A Ferrari 458 looks better than a Pontiac Aztek no matter what anyone who owns an Aztek says.
 
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Old 03-14-2019, 04:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Suaro View Post
JLR doing fine in the looks department.
 
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Old 03-14-2019, 05:00 AM
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My F-Type was built at the West Bromwich Plant in England (Britain).

Did not know they had a plant in China where yours must have been built!
 
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Old 03-14-2019, 05:38 AM
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Well, at least jaguar is trying to keep up with the Germans ...https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-47564225
 
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Old 03-14-2019, 05:55 AM
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Originally Posted by scm View Post
Well, at least jaguar is trying to keep up with the Germans ...https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-47564225
Except that the JLR recall is wholly and solely about CO2 while the Germans have been stung by NOx!
 
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Old 03-14-2019, 07:32 AM
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Originally Posted by xxaarraa View Post
English build quality is a joke, always been that way.
It isn't an English problem but a Lotus one. Many English makes exist with high build quality.

 
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