By Drew Johnson
Monday, Nov 19th, 2012 @ 9:29 am
 

The Chinese government has approved Jaguar Land Rover's joint-venture with Chery Automobile Company Ltd. With the deal complete, JLR has announced plans for a new joint-venture car brand with Chery, along with a $1.75 billion investment in the world's largest auto market.

Although both sides are keeping relatively quiet about future plans, JLR announced on Sunday that its new joint-venture company with Chery will "assemble models tailored specifically for the Chinese market." However, the British automaker didn't reveal if its new China-only automobile company would focus on volume models familiar to Chery or up-scale vehicles more akin to its Jaguar and Land Rover divisions.

In addition to the new vehicle brand, JLR will invest $1.75 billion in the Chinese market to establish a new manufacturing plant and research and development center. JLR didn't specify which vehicles it plans to produce at the Shanghai-area plant, but the facility should be open for business by 2014.

Jaguar also said a new engine plant will part of the joint-venture agreement, but failed to mention when it might open.

"We are delighted to have reached this milestone, achieved thanks to the understanding and foresight of the Chinese authorities and we want to thank them for recognizing the potential of our joint venture in the fast-growing Chinese market," JLR said in a statement.

"Together, we will now begin working in close collaboration on our partnership plans to harness the capabilities of our respective companies, to produce relevant, advanced models for Chinese consumers."

JLR's China sales have increased 80 percent so far this year, fueled by strong demand for the company's XF, XJ and Evoque models.