Jaguar Land Rover to cut 300 jobs, slows production
LONDON (Reuters) - British luxury car-maker Jaguar Land Rover will cut 300 jobs from its Halewood plant in the north of England and stop production of its X-Type car due to the downturn in the auto industry.
"Our industry has been especially badly hit by the recession and the premium sector more than others. Jaguar Land Rover's retail sales fell by 28 percent in the past 10 months," Chief Executive David Smith said in a statement.
The company, owned by India's Tata Motors (TAMO.BO), said it would not close the Halewood plant -- which employs 2,000 staff and also makes the Land Rover Freelander -- but would shut it down temporarily for about three weeks.
A spokesman said the group was still in talks with the government over a loan guarantee for a 340 million euro ($477.6 million) hand-out from the European Investment Bank -- approved earlier this year.
"We are hopeful for a speedy and successful conclusion," a spokesman told Reuters.
Tata Motors said last month that Jaguar Land Rover made an after-tax loss of 306 million pounds ($501.5 million) over the ten months to end March, when it also warned of further job cuts.
However, the company pressed ahead with the launch of the high end Jaguar XJ model last week, hosting a glitzy London party attended by Australian model Elle McPherson and the actor David Hasselhoff.
(Reporting by John Bowker, Editing by Rhys Jones)
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