Unite union steps up bid for talks over Jaguar and Land Rover after Ford reveals intention to cash in on car legends

A leading trade union has called for talks with management of Jaguar and Land Rover, after its parent company Ford said it had appointed investment bankers to advise on the future of the two UK motoring legends.

US-based Ford acquired Jaguar in 1989 for £1.6bn and Land Rover in 2000 for £1.7bn. Jaguar employs about 10,000 workers in the UK at sites in Coventry, Birmingham and Liverpool, while Land Rover has around 9,000 employees, mainly at Solihull in the West Midlands, at Halewood near Liverpool, and at Gaydon in Warwickshire.

Tony Woodley, joint general secretary of the new super union Unite, stressed that Land Rover was a profitable brand and Jaguar a major brand in the luxury market.

“The important point here is that Ford is not looking for a fire sale to the lowest bidder and Jaguar/Land Rover are firmly linked. These are quality vehicles requiring high levels of continuing investment in development,” he said.

Dave Osborne, Unite’s national secretary for the car industry, said: “We are very concerned to hear these reports and we are seeking an urgent meeting with [Ford]. We have been pressing for assurances on the future from Jaguar/Land Rover and will redouble those demands now.”

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