Fleet News

New compact Jaguar will share Volvo parts

SOME of the equipment in Jaguar's next new compact executive model will also be shared by a Volvo product. The X400 project being developed to challenge the BMW 3-series is not too far down the track to get cost benefits from Ford's acquisition of Volvo.

To go into production at Halewood from the end of 2001, the model destined to lift Jaguar sales to the 200,000 a year mark was signed off too soon to share its platform and drivetrain with its still-secret Swedish cousin. But it is likely to share some components with the latest member of Ford's Premier Automotive Group, managing director Jonathan Browning told Fleet NewsNet at the Tokyo Motor Show.

'Talks to identify potential areas for economy of scale within PAG are still going on, but heating and ventilation and the electrical systems of the X400 programme seem to offer significant opportunities,' he said. 'Having Volvo added to the Ford portfolio gives us a chance to develop expertise in the luxury market. What the Jaguar customer touches and feels will still be different to Volvo, but that does not mean we can't both make use of the systems behind the controls.

'Because we have been part of Ford for 10 years, we have looked at this area before. In the past, the search for synergies was much harder due to the great differences between the volume and luxury sectors. Now Volvo is on board, we look forward to making savings while maintaining brand differences - and the greatest benefit will come with the next new programme.'

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