Jaguar is set to drastically cut its UK dealer network from more than 80 today to less than 20 in just two years.
The car manufacturer has told its dealer partners that it doesn’t need a large number of the sites anymore as it transitions to an all-electric future.
At an investor meeting for its car dealers recently, the car maker told its partners it would be drastically reducing its numbers across the country.
Dealers at the event signed non-disclosure agreements about the plans – but they have been leaked to Car Dealer.
Most Jaguar Land Rover dealerships are currently dual franchise with half the showrooms dedicated to Jaguar and half to Land Rover.
JLR dealers were asked to invest huge sums in the Arch concept dealerships which housed both brands. Marshall Motor Group spent £10m building one in Lincoln.
The large majority of these will now become sole Land Rover sites as the brand focuses on what it calls its ‘houses of brand’ – Range Rover, Defender, Discovery and, to a lesser extent, Jaguar.
Several Car Dealer sources have confirmed the manufacturer’s plans.
‘We were told that Jaguar dealer numbers will be between 15 and 18 in just two years,’ said one source at the meeting with JLR.
‘That’s a huge cut from where they are today. They have more than 80 across the country at the moment.
‘As Jaguar moves to agency sales it thinks it needs less dealers, but we never thought it would be anything like as drastic as this.
‘There were a lot of open mouths when we were told.’
Car Dealer has corroborated the revelations with several other JLR franchise holders.
Jaguar is set to move to agency sales – directly selling cars to consumers itself online and getting dealers to hand them over – when it launches its electric cars in 2025.
A second Jaguar Land Rover franchisee told Car Dealer: ‘Jaguar was always seen as the Land Rover tax – you couldn’t have one without the other.
‘History dictates that no car manufacturer has ever been successful running their own car dealerships, and I can’t see it being any different for Jaguar. Best of luck to them.’