Range Rover Sport_Dynamic_SE_P400_23MY_070922_08, via JLR media siteRange Rover Sport_Dynamic_SE_P400_23MY_070922_08, via JLR media site


Jaguar Land Rover helps ‘fund police port security’ to tackle gangs stealing its cars

  • Boss admits it is having to help fund police security patrols at ports to tackle theft issue
  • He asks why the firm is having to do this and not the government
  • CEO clearly emotive over thefts that have driven up insurance costs for owners of its cars

Time 11:18 am, February 3, 2024

Jaguar Land Rover boss Adrian Mardell has admitted the firm is partly funding ‘police security’ at ports in an attempt to tackle the theft issue plaguing the brand.

Land Rover models are a particular target for criminals with Range Rovers and Range Rover Sports still attractive to thieves.

Some insurance firms have been quoting premiums in the tens of thousands of pounds for some owners as thefts continue to blight the brand.

The manufacturer says the problem has got better and it recently rolled out new software to be retro-fitted to its cars in an attempt to tackle the issue.

Now, in interviews this week as the manufacturer unveiled its latest financial results, CEO Mardell said he wants the government to tackle the organised crime gangs.

‘Should we have to fund [police at ports]?,’ he asked, in comments reported by The Times. 

‘We need a national conversation about the reasons for organised crime and how we stop it. I would rather have funds put forward to that than toward tax breaks.

‘This is super-important and super-personal and we will sort it out.’

Mardell angrily defended figures reporting Range Rover models were the most stolen brand per 100,000. He said he had seen evidence from the police that the number of Range Rovers pinched had fallen 27%.

JLR said in November it was investing £10m in vehicle security for its latest models and would make it available to older cars too.

The firm said more than 65,000 eligible vehicles from 2018 models onwards have received security updates so far, and it’s urging remaining owners to take up the updates.

The car maker has even launched its own Land Rover Insurance product again for customers facing high premiums.

However, Mardell wants all firms to provide cover, adding: ‘There is no reason, zero reason, that insurance companies should not insure these vehicles.’

Much of the thefts have been driven by organised crime gangs either exporting the cars to other markets or breaking them for parts.

JLR still has a problem with its parts supply, reported by Car Dealer last week, with thousands of cars still off the road awaiting bits to fix them. Anecdotally, this has driven a surge in thefts for cars being broken for their parts.

Mardell mentioned the parts supply issue in his call with reporters saying at its worst some 5,000 critical parts were delayed. He explained that had now been reduced to 2,000.

JLR saw revenue hit £21.1bn for the first nine months of its financial year while profits hit £627m in the third quarter.

The JLR boss also revealed that some 16,000 orders for its new electric Range Rover had already been taken.

James Baggott's avatar

James is the founder and editor-in-chief of Car Dealer Magazine, and CEO of parent company Baize Group. James has been a motoring journalist for more than 20 years writing about cars and the car industry.

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