Executives have already pointed to 40 new JLR product launches over the next five years. Land-Rover's products are divided into luxury, leisure and utility; it is expected that in the Land-Rover-badged leisure sector there could be at least five new models.
This gives an indication of the challenges facing facilities engineering, manufacturing and product engineering in the years to come. The challenge will be about the management and implementation of change in the UK at the same time that developments will be taking place on the other side of the world. Finding the right people, in the right numbers to manage this change will be a huge challenge.
An added burden of the process is the wage-inflation which moves along silently and almost unseen with this migration of people within a growing industry. The wage-inflation hits small companies which then find it increasingly difficult to compete and hold their place in the supply base community.
In addition, the West Midlands supply chain must be hoping that they too can share in some of the action that is set to unfold in the coming years.
As with any joint venture, it is up to each party to maximise its opportunities from the participation, as well as ensure that jointly two and two make five. In this case, in which there is also a huge cultural divide, it may be a case of which beneficiary is the most shrewd that determines the eventual 'winner'. Whatever, each side has a lot to learn from the other. It could be a truly 'ground-breaking endeavour.
However, it may never be possible to quantify the real difference in 'true' cost of manufacture between the two sides for a near-equivalent product; each is coming from a different starting point.