7 September 2017

In his keynote speech to the inaugural Jaguar Land Rover Tech Fest, CEO Dr Ralf Speth has declared that Jaguar Land Rover is leading the mobility revolution, but challenged the UK government to match his company’s efforts and those of the whole automotive industry if the country is to reap the benefits.


Opening the company’s technology showcase at Central Saint Martins, Dr Speth said: “We stand on the brink of the mobility revolution. Autonomous, connected, electrified and shared vehicles.

“The impact of the changes we are about to embrace will be huge across all sectors of our economy and every section of society – globally. The opportunities are great: enormous social and health benefits, an end to congestion, zero accidents, no more tailpipe pollution and clean air.

“The risks are huge, too. To jobs. To our privacy. To our freedom. This mobility revolution will change lives – profoundly.”

Dr Speth set out in detail Jaguar Land Rover’s advanced plans to lead the mobility revolution.

He said: “At Jaguar Land Rover our journey has started. You can buy the world’s first premium, performance, electric SUV – the Jaguar I-PACE – from next year.

“From 2020 all our new vehicles will be electrified, giving our customers more choice.

“We will introduce a portfolio of electrified vehicles across our model range, embracing fully electric, plug-in hybrid and mild hybrid cars and SUVs.

“And our vision for mobility in 2040 and beyond is demonstrated by FUTURE-TYPE

“We're also future-proofing our heritage and today you can see an electric version of our iconic Jaguar E-type: breathtaking design with electric power for the first time.


“We are not just preparing for the future but delivering it.”

But Dr Speth issued a challenge to the UK government to match the industry’s ambition and bring society together to deliver the new world of mobility.

He said: “Can the UK compete with other nations who are moving fast in developing the technology, infrastructures and collaborations to shape the future of mobility?

“This country has the intellect, imagination and ideas, as you will see today. It always has.

“But history tells us too often it has failed in delivery. And in this new mobility revolution, if there is not a nimbleness in response, the danger of failure is too harsh to contemplate.

“Dates are set by UK government for the banning of diesel and petrol vehicles by 2040, but with no detailed plans behind this bold statement.

“We as a company can deliver electric vehicles. Where is the network of charging points that they will require to function? Indeed, where is the power grid that will allow us to build them?

“We know the levels of connectivity that will be needed in the future. To allow autonomous vehicles. Freeing individuals. Increasing productivity. Reducing accidents.

“We know of the 5G network the rest of the world is working upon to enable it. Where is it here?”

Dr Speth called on the world to move to a new level of globalisation to meet the social and technological demands of the global mobility revolution.

He said: “Our era of globalisation has been both a positive and a negative. For a country like the UK it lowered the costs of imports, improving the quality of lives.

“It also saw the export of jobs diminishing the quality of life in many communities and, in some cases, leading to their extinction.

“We have to accept that in a time when innovation can come from any continent, differing social conditions can be the difference in the speed of delivery of those ideas.

“For a company like Jaguar Land Rover – a quintessentially British company – globalisation has been a benefit.

“We are now a global company with a reach and facilities across the world. Becoming truly international has not diluted our Britishness, it has enriched us.


“That is why the next stage of globalisation – Globalisation 2.0 if you like – must be about more than competition. It must mature into collaboration.

“We have much to share – not just in technology and practices but also in social knowledge.

“In our world, to quote the father of evolution, Charles Darwin, ‘it is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change’.

“Collaboration between people united by pioneering spirit is the key. 

“All sectors and disciplines working together – designers, engineers, manufacturers, academia, suppliers, customers and governments.”

Further information

About Jaguar Land Rover

Jaguar Land Rover is the UK’s largest automotive manufacturer, built around two iconic British car brands: Land Rover, the world’s leading manufacturer of premium all-wheel-drive vehicles; and Jaguar, one of the world’s premier luxury sports saloon and sports car marques.

We employ almost 42,000 people globally and support around 240,000 more through our dealerships, suppliers and local businesses. Manufacturing is centred in the UK, with additional plants in China, Brazil, India and Slovakia.

At Jaguar Land Rover we are driven by a desire to create class-leading products that deliver great customer experiences. The largest investor in R&D in the UK manufacturing sector, we have invested £16 billion in the last seven years and in the current year alone will spend over £4 billion on new product creation and capital expenditure. In 2016 Jaguar Land Rover sold more than 583,000 vehicles in 136 countries, with more than 80 per cent of our vehicles produced in the UK being sold abroad.

Notes to Editors

About Tech Fest 2017: Technology with Heart

‘Technology with Heart’ is the theme of Jaguar Land Rover’s inaugural Tech Fest, an event that explores the positive role technology is playing in reshaping the automotive industry and beyond.

The free-to-enter festival takes place at the internationally recognised Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London. It is open to the public from Friday 8 September to Sunday 10 September.

The event will be packed full of innovative exhibits and interactive displays that demonstrate how technology is being used to make a positive difference. Attendees can fast forward into the future and take a glimpse into a world where cars drive themselves and vehicles are shared, not owned.

Join the conversation using #JLRTechFest