Jaguar Land Rover will follow in the footsteps of its premium rivals by opening design studios outside its UK home market.
Jaguar’s design chief Ian Callum told Automotive News Europe the company will set up studios in China and the United States in order to develop products that are better suited to local tastes in those markets.
“We have to design cars in the JLR ethos, but there are details we have to know about. We are going to go out there to get a feeling for what the market is and what people like,” Callum said at the Paris auto show. Based on last year’s sales figures, United Kingdom is Jaguar Land Rover’s biggest market, but it is closely followed by the United States and China.
Other premium carmakers already have many design centers outside their home markets around the world. In April, BMW Group subsidiary DesignworksUSA opened a studio in Shanghai, while BMW’s California-based design consultancy also has studios in Los Angeles, Munich, and Singapore.
Mercedes-Benz and Audi also opened studios in China last year (Beijing). In addition, Mercedes-Benz, Audi and Volvo all have studios in California, while the star brand also has design centers in Japan and Italy and Volvo has a studio in Spain.
Callum did not say when and where exactly JLR’s design studios will be built. However, one thing’s for sure: the design of Jaguars and Land Rovers will remain British.