Jaguar I-PACE production halted over battery shortage
Production of the pure-electric Jaguar I-PACE will temporarily be suspended over a supply issue with its large lithium-ion battery cells.
According to Jaguar Land Rover (JLR), manufacturing at the Magna Steyr plant in Graz, Austria will be halted from Monday February 17 and last a week following a failure for battery supplier, LG Chem, to delivery it 90kWh battery packs in time.
LG Chem, that also supplies its batteries to Audi and Mercedes-Benz, is reportedly struggling with unprecedented demand.
Jaguar has been trying to secure more battery capacity before the current stoppage and signed a deal with Samsung SDI back in 2018.
Last year, Jaguar sold 18,000 I-PACEs worldwide, with the battery-powered SUV now accounting for 16 per cent of Jaguar’s European sales.
Commenting on the shortages, Jaguar says it is “working with the supplier to resolve this [issue] to minimise impact on customer orders.”
The timing couldn’t be worse for the struggling British car-maker following the news, only yesterday, it was scaling back production at two of its car plants to reduce costs following a drop in demand.
Luckily, despite sales slumps in key markets, like China, sales of both the recently-launched Range Rover Evoque are up by 30 per cent while Discovery Sport sales have also increased more than nine per cent.
Cutting costs further within the car-maker, JLR has already launched Project Charge – an aggressive internal initiative that has prioritised its most profitable models, slashed the costs of manufacturing and cut 4500 jobs in a bid to save £1.1 billion ($A2.1b) by 2021.