Well, I suppose it was always going to happen. After all, Jaguar Land Rover (JLR), although still considered by most to be a traditional British car maker, is in fact owned by Indian Conglomerate Tata. And Tata has announced this morning that Jaguar Cars and Land Rovers are to go on sale in India.
Not surprisingly, Tata Motors is appointed as importer for Jaguar and Land Rover in India, and they will be opening a new Jaguar Land Rover showroom in Mumbai in June.
There is certainly enough wealth in India these days to have a market for Jaguar’s premium cars (including the new Jaguar XJ and the Jaguar XFR), and Land Rovers (including the New Range Rover, New Range Rover Sport and Discovery LR4) will at least have no problem coping with the sometimes less than perfect roads.
But we do wonder how long Tata will stay as ‘Importers’ of Jaguar cars. India has a pretty penal import duty on cars (unless Tata has secured some sort of exemption) which would run to 100%+ for Jaguars and Land Rovers. So will Tata end up going the BMW route to get round the problem, and actually start building the cars in India? Now that would be interesting, as it would open up the possibility of Indian made Jaguars coming back to the UK to be perceived as British Cars. We’ll have to wait and see.