Jaguar Land Rover is set to build an electric car in China soon and would become the latest luxury manufacturer to tap the growing demand for EVs in the country.
German car giants Volkswagen and Daimler have already made similar commitments with EVs in China through their Audi and Mercedes brands.
Jaguar’s E-Pace is currently built locally through Chinese partner Chery Automobile Co. although the company’s sole electric model, the I-Pace, is entirely built in Austria by Magna Steyr.
Murray Dietsch, president of the joint venture to produce an EV in China, expects the details of the program to be announced within a year.
“Our expectation is the penetration of EV will continue to grow more than linearly,” he told Bloomberg.
“With the combination of the enhancement in SUV market and the expectation of higher penetration of battery-electric vehicles, you will see more battery-electric SUVs in the market in the future.”
Audi is planning to build five EV models in China by 2022 while Daimler AG is spending €655 million (c. $766 million) to produce Mercedes EVs with a Chinese partner.
Elon Musk is also preparing to open a Tesla plant in the Asian country and has recently set up a wholly-owned subsidiary in Shanghai.
BMW announced earlier this year it has signed a “letter of intent” with Great Wall Motor to build the new electric Mini locally for the Chinese market.