Geneva Motor Show report: UK manufacturers make headlines

07 March 2014 #SMMT News

A plethora of the UK’s diverse car manufacturers turned out at the Geneva Motor Show 2014 this week to show off their latest creations. The varying nature of the vehicles on display was a testament to the country’s thriving automotive industry.

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Making headlines at the start of the show was Jaguar, which released the first picture of its upcoming mid-sized saloon, naming it the XE. Jaguar Land Rover CEO, Ralph Speth, announced that the new saloon will use a range of engines from its new £500 million i54 manufacturing facility in Wolverhampton. He also revealed that it will be the first aluminium construction car in its class and that a production version will be shown later this year.

Land Rover also announced that its Discovery brand will spawn a family of SUVs, the first of which will be shown at the Detroit motor show early next year. The introduction of multiple models is expected to further increase the output of JLR’s UK facilities.

2014 Mini Clubman ConceptThe new MINI hatchback, which recently went into production at the manufacturer’s Oxford plant, was also on display along with the Clubman concept. Previewing the successor to the current UK-built model, the concept features a more conventional layout than that of the current car with two rear doors rather than one – although barn-style doors remain in place of a traditional bootlid.

A number of styling tweaks and a new 1.2 DIG-T petrol engine were shown on the Nissan Juke: revisions that could keep the Sunderland-built car among the top 10 new cars registered in 2014.

The UK’s luxury and sports car manufacturers were also out in force, with Bentley showing its revised GTC Speed and reporting that orders for its new SUV, due in 2016, have already exceeded 2,000.

2014 Rolls-Royce Ghost Series IIMeanwhile, Rolls-Royce showed off its second-generation Ghost, a car which has helped increase the Goodwood facility’s output from 1,212 in 2008 to 3,630 in 2013. With customers keen for the Ghost’s shape to remain unchanged, the ‘baby Rolls’ gets mild styling tweaks and the Wraith’s eight-speed ZF gearbox, which connects to the satellite navigation system.

Woking-based McLaren also caused a stir with its new 650S. Developed to sit above the 12C, the 650S takes styling cues from the P1 and is expected to increase the brand’s penetration in a number of markets.

2014 McLaren 650S Spider

To learn more about the UK’s diverse automotive industry, download SMMT Motor Industry Facts 2014.

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