Built by Aida Engineering, it’s the first Servo Press Line of its kind to be built in the UK, and has a stamping capacity of 7900 tonnes – that’s about as much as 3155 Discovery 4s, or 6717 80in Series Is.
The press is part of a £230 million investment that Land Rover has spent on its Halewood plant since 2011. Halewood is currently operating at full capacity 24 hours-a-day for the first time in its 50 year history, churning out the Freelander 2 and the Range Rover Evoque, which accounts for about a third of Land Rover sales.
At 13 metres tall and over 85 metres long, installing the new press meant getting creative with the existing Halewood press shop, raising the roof by almost 12 metres and extending the floor area by almost 50 per cent. Halewood now has one of the largest stamping floors in the UK.
Trial pressings begin in April, and by the autumn the facility will be making up to 20 panels per minute for use across JLR. It’s also more energy efficient than previous presses, capturing lost energy from the draw action and converting it back into electricity.
Richard Else, Jaguar Land Rover’s Halewood Operations Director, said: ‘Halewood is one of the most flexible, advanced automotive manufacturing facilities in Europe, producing two of the highest quality, largest selling Jaguar Land Rover vehicles to over 170 countries worldwide. This investment ensures we can make more panels, even more efficiently and will continue to do so for many years to come.’