Jaguar Land Rover is to create 1,300 new jobs in the UK at its Solihull plant as it accelerates aluminium and lightweight technologies and adds a performance crossover model next year.

Revealing the need for extra staffing at today's (12 January) opening of the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), the automaker's news follows entry of the Jaguar XE into new facilities at Solihull in the UK Midlands region.

Jaguar says its first crossover will be known as 'F-PACE'. The new vehicle is due to enter production in late 2015 and has been previewed by multiple concepts, each named C-X17.

"Today's announcements demonstrate our commitment to the UK and the advancement of a high-tech, high skilled, manufacturing-led economy," said JLR CEO, Ralf Speth.

"It is innovation and quest for new technologies that sets our products apart. We want to offer
customers greater choice, with even more vehicles, crafted with that special British flair.

"We want to improve the quality of life for our customers and for our own employees, creating opportunities for more people to be part of the Jaguar Land Rover experience." 

To support the introduction of its new aluminium and lightweight technologies Jaguar Land Rover has already invested GBP1.5bn (US$2.3bn), maintaining the new facilities represent the largest single investment in the Solihull plant in its 70-year history.

Applications for the 1,300 new jobs, whose nature has not yet been specified, are now being accepted and following the automaker's support of the recent UK Invictus Games, JLR says it is welcoming approaches from military personnel who are leaving or have left the services. 

The Solihull plant builds vehicles such as the Range Rover, Range Rover Sport, Land Rover Discovery and is home to the Defender. Most recently, the site received the first Jaguar in its history, with the introduction of the new Jaguar XE, which begins production in the Spring. 

Jaguar Land Rover added it had record full-year retail sales in 2014 of 462,678 vehicles, double that of 2008. A 2014/15 fiscal year investment of GBP3.75bn in product creation has seen the introduction of new products and business expansion.

The company's headcount has increased to 32,000, some 10,000 more than were employed four years ago. The 1,300 jobs announced for Solihull today are in addition to the 1,700 created in 2013 for the introduction of the Jaguar XE.

The company plans 50 product actions during the next five years, of which twelve will be this year.

JLR was not immediately available to comment on the nature of the new employment.