Tata Motors is paying the price because Jaguar Land Rover has been slow in the EV race

Tata Motors is paying the price because Jaguar Land Rover has been slow in the EV race
Jaguar Land Rover's struggles are dragging Tata Motors downPixabay
  • The British subsidiary, part of the $123 billion Indian conglomerate, Tata Group, has lagged its European peers in launching electric vehicles.
  • While the chip shortage has affected EV makers around the world, JLR has been particularly slow in making the pivot from combustion engines to battery powered vehicles.
  • The stock of Tata Motors, the owner of JLR, has lost 12% of its value in the last six months, three times more than the index of listed automobile companies.
  • Check out the latest news, updates, and analysis on Business Insider.
British car maker Daimler will finish this year with four new electric vehicles (EV), Sweden-based Volvo has plans to unveil one new model every year until 2025, whereas the German carmaker Audi is confident that by 2025 one in every three cars it sells will run on batteries.

On the other hand, Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) currently has one electric car in its stable, the Jaguar I-Pace. The company plans to launch its first new energy vehicle in 2024. By then, its rivals BMW, Daimler and Volvo would have blazed past with 12, 4, and 4 new electric vehicles, respectively.

New energy vehicle refers to a class of both plug-in electric vehicles and hybrid electric vehicles. JLR’s parent company, the Mumbai-based Tata Motors itself has two EV models out in the market currently, Tigor and Nexon.

The electric dreams

BMW-90% of present market segments to have EV options, 12 new EV modelsEV share in volumes at 50%, EV option in 100% segments
Daimler4 new EVsEV share of total sales at 50%100% electric
Audi-1 in 3 sales to be EVsTo launch only EVs from 2026
Volvo1 new EV1 new EV each year, 50% sales from EVs-
Jaguar-1st new energy vehicle in 2025100% sales from EVs by 2027
Land Rover-1st new energy vehicle in 202460% sales from EVs by 2030

Source: Nirmal Bang Institutional Equities, company reports

Jaguar Land Rover (JLR), one of the marquee brands among luxury car makers, has been quite slow in making a pivot to the era of EVs. “About 38-40% of global EV sales are premium; of which JLR’s market share is less than 1%,” pointed out a report dated August 20 from Nirmal Bang, an Indian broking firm.

It’s not like the company doesn’t recognise it. In February this year, Chief Executive Officer Thierre Bollore laid out a roadmap to accelerate JLR’s transition to the electric era. Not just EVs, JLR also plans to invest significantly to develop hydrogen fuel cell driven cars, but the initial testing is expected to begin in the UK in 2022.

Tata Motors is paying the price because Jaguar Land Rover has been slow in the EV race
Jaguar I-PaceJaguar

However, the global shortage in semiconductor chips put the brakes on early. Earlier this year, JLR, the British auto giant issued a profit warning over chip shortage – more specifically, it pointed out that its September quarter production will fall by 50% as the luxury car maker struggles to make alternative arrangements.

JLR accounted for 76% of Tata Motors’ consolidated quarterly revenue at the end of June.

Company reports

However, while the chip shortage is not a problem unique to JLR, a lot of its European peers have made more significant strides compared to the British car maker owned by Tata Motors, part of the $120 billion Indian conglomerate Tata Group.

Tata Motors is paying the price because Jaguar Land Rover has been slow in the EV race
Tata Motors share price over the last six monthsBSE / Business Insider India / Flourish

JLR has negligible presence in China, which is the most profitable market when it comes to electric vehicles. Its rivals, Volvo and BMW, together had a share of nearly 20% in terms of new energy vehicles in 2020.

“Jaguar Land Rover bet heavily on diesel fuel to drive their large sport utility vehicles (SUVs), which have higher weight and drag so need more energy to propel them, to the extent that until recently 90% of their vehicles ran on diesel,” said Dr. Charles Tennant, a former chief engineer at Land Rover, in an interview with CoventryLive.


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