Profit before tax slipped in the quarter as JLR readied the launch of a redesigned Discovery

Profit before tax slipped in the quarter as JLR readied the launch of a redesigned Discovery

Tata Motors' Jaguar Land Rover luxury vehicle unit in the UK booked a 13% increase in revenue to GBP6.5bn (US$8.1bn) following strong customer demand for its vehicles in the three months to 31 December 2016 but pretax profit slipped as the company ramped up for the redesigned Discovery.

Total retail sales of 149,288 vehicles, up 8.5% year-on-year, were a record for the third quarter with higher volumes in China, (up 38.4% including sales from the China joint venture), North America (up 19.8%) and Europe (up 7.0%) led by strong sales of various new models.

Jaguar retailed 45,364 vehicles, up 90.3%.

Land Rover retailed 103,924 vehicles, down 8.7% due to the run-out of the old model Discovery, ahead of the start of sales in this fourth fiscal quarter.

Ralf Speth, Jaguar Land Rover chief executive officer, said: "Continuing expansion and innovation in our compelling product range have driven up global revenues and retail unit sales.

"Models such as the all-new Discovery mark the latest step in our investment programme, which will underpin long-term profitable, sustainable growth."

Third quarter profit before tax was GBP255m compared with GBP499m in fiscal 2015/6 (after an exceptional item of GBP30m of initial insurance recoveries related to the Tianjin port explosion), primarily reflecting the run-out of the Discovery ahead of the new model, unfavourable foreign exchange revaluation, higher marketing expense and depreciation and amortisation, partially offset by further exceptional recoveries related to the 2015 explosion (GBP85m). Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation were GBP611m in the quarter. PBT for the first nine months of 2016/17 was GBP934m, down slightly from the GBP980m in the nine months of the prior year.