Jaguar’s latest model to be built in UK

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The newest Jaguar sports car will be built in Birmingham, it was announced yesterday.

The F-type two-seater convertible will be built at Jaguar Land Rover’s Castle Bromwich plant.

The design will be unveiled later this year, the carmaker said at a Press conference in New York.

Prototypes of the new luxury car are leaving the English plant as the company begins on-road testing.

Ian Hoban, Jaguar’s vehicle line director said: “The engineering development of the F-type has focused on delivering a heightened level of dynamic driving reward.

“We are excited about our progress to date and are looking forward to soon being able to demonstrate what we have achieved.”

The car will go on sale in 2013.

Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “I am delighted that Jaguar’s innovative new sports car will be made by the highly-skilled workforce at Castle Bromwich in the Midlands. This news is further evidence of the company’s growth and strength of the brand which remains a key part of the UK’s positive automotive story.

“This announcement follows the recent good news of another 1,000 jobs at Jaguar Land Rover’s Halewood plant.”

Meanwhile, new car sales accelerated last month, boosted by the new 12-plate registration numbers, official figures have shown.

There were 372,835 new registrations in March 2012 – a 1.8 per cent rise on the March 2011 total, the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) said.

Last month’s figure took the total for the year so far to 563,556 – a 0.9 per cent rise on the January-March 2011 total.

The March 2012 figures were further boosted by private sales rising 7.4 per cent – one of the best monthly increases in the past two years.

This was the third successive month of growth for new car sales, with the March 2012 figure being around six per cent higher than motor industry forecasts.

But last month’s figure was still around 17 per cent lower than the pre-recession March 2007 total.

SMMT chief executive Paul Everitt said: “Domestic demand for new cars is showing signs of recovery, with private buyers increasingly returning to take advantage of a wide range of excellent products and, this month, the new 12-plate.”

The Ford Fiesta was the top-selling model in March 2012.