Blog: Jag Browns Lane
Dave Leggett | 20 September 2004
When you close down an assembly plant (or cease assembly), it never goes down well with those who are working there and Browns Lane is also the spiritual home of Jaguar, which heightens the emotional reaction in the industry generally. But it's hard to see how Ford, if serious about cutting PAG losses, could have done anything else. If the sales and profit aren't there something has to give and lately, Jaguar's sales just haven't been there. Has Ford's stewardship of the revered brand been a good thing? I'd say yes overall, although I'm sure there are plenty who'd say no.
And Jaguar has also been the victim of adverse circumstances - like unfavourable exchange rates - and a horrible confluence of negatives that made drastic action necessary. Appeasing the shareholders? More like pleasing the shareholders and what do people expect boards to do when it really comes down to it (and to be fair, they've - along with PAG's management - been pretty patient over the last few years)? Jaguar isn't publicly owned by the British government nowadays! And yes, the big decisions are taken in the US. Would Jaguar even be around today if Ford hadn't come in for it? Remember what Jag quality used to be like not so many years ago?
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