Luxury car group motoring after record financial results in an improving market

A record year for luxury car maker, Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) has seen it rack up annual revenues of £29bn, a 27% improvement on the previous year, as well as record fourth quarter sales of £7.9bn, respectively.

The car maker achieved a £2.2bn pre-tax profit, its highest since 2015, in the year to March 31, 2024.

Free cash flow hit £892m for the fourth quarter, and a record £2.3bn for the full year, while net debt was reduced to £700m.

The Indian-owned manufacturer has production plants at Halewood in Merseyside and Solihull and Castle Bromwich in the West Midlands.

JLR’s latest figures reveal record Range Rover wholesale and retail sales for both Q4 and FY24.

Wholesale sales are the finished cars JLR sells as a business, as opposed to retails which are vehicles customers buy from retailers.

Range Rover Electric generated strong interest with more than 28,700 sign-ups to the waiting list since opening in December 2023.

Meanwhile, Range Rover SV demand more than doubled to 4,099 units in FY24, including the sale of 20 Range Rover SV Bespoke Sadaf editions which sold out at around £330,000 each.

The new Defender OCTA will be revealed on July 3, with prospective clients invited to one of seven exclusive events to experience the product.

During the year the group neared completion of the installation of its new battery conveyor system at Solihull for Range Rover Electric, while a new additional body shop for Range Rover became fully operational.

The development of an all-electric EMA production facility at Halewood, UK continues with the addition of 300 robots and new assembly lines installed in a new body shop.

The group made a £356m investment in an Electric Propulsion Manufacturing Centre in Wolverhampton, installing equipment to manufacture battery packs and electric drive units.

And the group created 950 new electrification roles during the 2024 financial year in pursuit of its all-electric manufacturing strategy.

Its sustainabillity platform will see the business generate more than a quarter of its UK electricity from new onsite and near-site renewable energy project.

New energy storage systems using second life Range Rover, Range Rover Sport PHEV and I-Pace batteries have been developed, and the new Range Rover Electric and EMA prototypes are currently undergoing cold weather testing in the Arctic Circle.

Chief executive, Adrian Mardell, said: “This has been a year of great strategic progress at JLR and I would like to thank our clients, our people, our suppliers and partners for their role in our success.

“We have delivered a record financial performance for the company, generating free cashflow of £2.3bn, enabling us to reduce net debt to £0.7bn.

“The foundation of this performance was the sustained global demand for our modern luxury vehicles, led by our Range Rover and Defender brands, underpinned by a consistent focus on operational improvement.”

He added: “We are entering the next exciting phase of our Reimagine strategy which will see us bring to life our modern luxury electric vehicles and deliver an accompanying modern luxury experience for our clients, ensuring we continue to vigorously address the challenges we have encountered in 2024.”

The group has a £1.5bn undrawn revolving credit facility that matures on April 1, 2026.

Its order book was around 133,000 vehicles at the end of the financial year, 76% of which were for Range Rover, Range Rover Sport and Defender models.

As expected, the order book has gradually reduced over the course of the year, as client orders have been fulfilled following an easing in the global supply of micro-chips.

Looking ahead, the group said it will continue to focus on brand activation to maintain the order book.

It expects EBIT margins in FY25 to be around the FY24 level, and anticipates a modest increase in investment spend to £3.5bn, but still expects to become net debt zero during FY25.