Eight Years Later, Ford’s Sell-Off Has Made The Automotive Industry Better
Beginning in March of 2007, Ford sold off Aston Martin, and a year later sold Land Rover and Jaguar to Tata Motors.
Aston went to a private group of investors with racing Mogul David Richards heading the group. A year later, Ford’s sell-off of Jaguar and Land Rover was one of their final divestments from brands that they had let stagnate, due to the automobile bail-out crisis, which Ford avoided by the sell-offs.
Eight years later, Aston is one of the top Luxury/Supercar manufacturers in the world, and has reported increasing sales every year since 2010 according to gearheads.org. Aston has gone from being a slightly more expensive Jaguar copy, to carving out its own niche in the automotive industry. They are making more models, which are much better than the piece-parted versions from various Ford companies.
The really big sale of Jaguar and Land Rover to Tata Motors of India, has set free two of the most prestigious British brands from the inattentive bean-counters at Ford. Tata was rumored in the automotive press, mainly Top Gear, to have told the designers and engineers at both companies to be free to design and implement design ideas they had that Ford looked over. What resulted is a renaissance in British design and manufacturing of these iconic brands. Range Rovers went from being part BMW, part Ford, part whatever Ford would let Rover do on the cheap, to a reliable and dependable luxury SUV that can get you almost anywhere in the world, in the utmost style possible. I have driven the newer Range Rovers, and I would have a hard time not saying that they are some of the best cars in the world.
Same with Jaguar, except it was part Ford, part Ford, and cheap British designs that was so used up and boring by the end of the Ford era. Now, Jaguar has their own designs, motors, and some of the best looking cars out there, like the F-type. If there is a swan song to the sale of these companies to Tata, it is made by the exhaust pipes of the F-type. The symphonic, mad sound of the exhaust, and gorgeous styling of the F-Type (the picture in this post) is proof that Tata has truly let Jaguar and Land Rover do what they want and it has worked for them in spades.