Page last updated at 18:32 GMT, Wednesday, 15 October 2008 19:32 UK

Car firm to cut nearly 200 jobs

Land Rover and Jaguar signs
Jaguar Land Rover said the cuts were not linked to the economic downturn

Car firm Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) has confirmed plans to shed 198 jobs.

The firm said it was aimed at achieving greater efficiency, especially in manufacturing, and the cuts were not connected to a slump in new car sales.

The losses were expected to affect those aged 60 and over at its Castle Bromwich and Solihull sites in the West Midlands and Halewood, Merseyside.

A spokesman said all the redundancies would be voluntary and those affected would retire on a full pension.

'Well subscribed'

A number of design and engineering plants elsewhere in the UK may also be affected, the company said.

A spokesman said the number of jobs being lost was smaller than in previous years.

He said: "Notice has been sent out to all plants that we are seeking 198 voluntary redundancies out of a total workforce of 15,000.

"This is something we have been doing at this time of year for a number of years.

"It coincides with the annual budget planning process and is usually well subscribed."

Falling demand

The number of new car sales went down by 21.2% last month although Jaguar was one of the few premium brands to see an increase.

There were 3,608 new registrations last month - 3.56% up on September 2007's figure.

A total of 4,907 new Land Rovers were registered last month, a year-on-year fall of 49.7%.

Falling demand for vehicles had already led to several non-production days at Halewood, Castle Bromwich and Solihull.

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