Jaguar Land Rover’s China Woes Caused By Poor Quality Control

One of the main reasons behind Jaguar Land Rover’s latest quarterly loss, according the British automaker, were the “challenging market conditions in China”. But, as AutoNews reports, there might be more to this story.

Sales of new cars in China in 2018 have declined for the first time in 28 years, but the premium market continued to grow, with brands like Audi, Mercedes, BMW, Cadillac, Volvo and Lexus increasing their stake in the world’s largest car market. JLR, on the other hand, saw its deliveries dropping by 22 percent.

According to the report, one of the biggest reasons for this is the weak quality control of the China-made Jaguar Land Rover models. The British manufacturer has established a local joint venture with Chery since 2014, building models there like the Range Rover Evoque, Land Rover Discovery, and the Jaguar XFL, XEL and E-Pace locally.

Product quality was insufficient from the beginning, with the number of defects increasing over the years, along with the complaints from customers. In 2017 alone, JLR had to carry out 13 recalls in China for issues ranging from the engines and the instrument panels to the airbags and batteries. The recalls affected around 106,000 vehicles, or 70 percent of annual sales in China.

In addition, owners of JLR models have been regularly protesting in front of their China headquarters in Shanghai since last August in order to bring attention to the issues they’re facing with their cars.

Local dealers have started selling imported Jaguar models at steep discounts that can reach up to 30 percent, spurring the creation of the catchphrase “Jaguar at 70 percent of the price”.

These problems have apparently put a dent to the image of Jaguar and Land Rover models in China, making them less attractive to local premium car buyers who, inadvertently, will turn to other premium brands. JLR, which has already slashed 1,000 jobs and will lay off a further 5,000 employees in order to save £2.5 billion ($3.2 billion) over the next two years, as part of a two programs instigated by parent company Tata Motors that are supposed to turn JLR’s fortunes around.

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  • TheBelltower

    Is this really a surprise? JLR vehicles are pretty, but the engineering is third-world. Ask any mechanic. Even the Chinese have moved beyond this.

  • Mr. EP9

    They really need to get their house in order because this is unacceptable.

    • jfalckt

      Sounds like that comment was meant for the British Government

      • Mr. EP9

        Both to be honest.

        • Bo Hanan

          Tata Motors (JLR’s owner from India) needs to put their foot down.

  • Merc1

    JLR vehicles are pretty bad in quality and reliability when built in the UK so I can only imagine what a Chinese made JLR product is like. Looks, feels, drives and smells great, but then start lighting up it’s dashboard with crisis lights and promptly falls apart.


  • StrangerGP

    Guess what, European models also have poor quality and reliability.

  • It’s been an open secret that JLR vehicles are overpriced and unreliable junk, no matter where they’re made.

  • DM

    I really really love the Discovery, but if I were to get one then leasing it would be the way to go. Shame on the quality issues, JLR makes beautiful cars, though it appears to be a gamble to keep one after warranty expires.

    • benT

      …..unlike a Volvo where the average life of the 240 exceeded 40 years. They are still in 100s of thousands on the road in USA ans around the world with great serviceability and parts available at very reasonable prices.

      Similar results for other models in the range of Volvo cars.

      • Callanish

        You could praise the reliabilty of the 240 and possibly other older Volvo models, but the reliability is questionable on the newest generation of Volvo’s. Mechanical reliabilty is overall average, and the onboard technology reliability is pretty dismal according to all the reliabilty survey’s I’ve read for the Volvo lineup in the last few years. Nowhere near as bad as JLR, but nowhere close to the top either.


    • Astonman

      Keep in mind probably 90% off your appliances, computers, and any thing you find at your local store is made in China.


        • mattjelonek

          But you’re yelling because?


    • Many products made in China have indeed bad quality, yet the Chinese are very capable of making high quality items too – all iPhones, iPads and MacBook laptops from Apple are built in China, as well as many high-end smartphones for the likes of Samsung and LG.

  • Bo Hanan

    When China (who plagiarizes other car designs and creates crappy imitations) refuses to buy your cars because of poor quality- you really have problems.

  • emjayay

    “inadvertently” is not the word you were looking for.

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