Tata is leading JLR bidder

Published: 03 January 2008

Ford looks set to sell Jaguar/Land Rover (JLR) to Tata. In a statement to JLR workers today, Ford of Europe chairman Lewis Booth said: ‘Ford is committed to focused negotiations at a more detailed level with Tata Motors concerning the potential sale of the combined Jaguar Land Rover business.’ This is the first time that Ford has publicly revealed the identity of any bidder for JLR.  

JLR has been up for sale since June 2007, and other potential bidders include rival Indian vehicle maker Mahindra Group and private finance group One Equity fronted by former Ford CEO Jac Nasser. Tata itself already owns a few famous names, including Tetley Tea and Corus (formerly British Steel).

Reports have put Tata’s bid at $2billon, but today’s announcement from Booth signals that Tata will have more in-depth access to JLR’s financial information, so the final bid may be revised.

A final decision is still a few weeks away, but Tata already has a busy schedule ahead. On 9 Janaury 2008 it will reveal its ‘one-lakh’ car at the New Dehli Auto Show, and CAR will have the full details live from the show.

But should Ford even be selling JLR? CAR doesn’t think so. Check out the February 2008 issue of CAR where we reveal Land Rover’s latest concept, test Jaguar’s new XF, and tell you exactly why Ford should be keeping these two iconic British brands.

By Ben Pulman

CAR's editor-at-large, co-ordinator, tallboy