Munich - BMW, which once owned Land Rover, is now teaming up with Jaguar Land Rover (now owned by Tata) in an electric car marriage aimed at mitigating the rising costs of shifting to zero emissions vehicles.

BMW and Jaguar Land Rover announced on Wednesday that they will jointly develop electric motors, transmissions and power electronics.

Both carmakers are under pressure to roll out zero-emission vehicles to meet stringent anti-pollution rules, but have struggled to maintain profit margins faced with the rising costs of making electric, connected and autonomous cars.

“Together, we have the opportunity to cater more effectively for customer needs by shortening development time and bringing vehicles and state-of-the-art technologies more rapidly to market,” said BMW board member Klaus Froehlich.

BMW and Jaguar Land Rover said they will save costs through shared development, production planning and joint purchasing of electric car components. Both companies will produce electric drivetrains in their own manufacturing facilities, BMW said.

Nick Rogers, Jaguar Land Rover’s engineering director said, “We’ve proven we can build world beating electric cars but now we need to scale the technology to support the next generation of Jaguar and Land Rover products.”

BMW was in talks with Daimler about making electric car components but was separately also in discussions with Jaguar Land Rover, a company it once owned, about an alliance on transmissions.

Jaguar Land Rover is still run by former BMW managers, including Ralf Speth the company’s chief executive who spent 20 years at BMW prior to joining JLR, and Wolfgang Ziebart, the engineer who designed Jaguar’s iPace electric car, a former board member responsible for development and BMW.

BMW already has a deal to supply a V8 engine to Jaguar Land Rover.

Jaguar Land Rover said it would redouble efforts to cut costs after it posted a $4 billion (R58.4bn) loss earlier this year, hit by a downturn in demand for SUVs in China and a regulatory clampdown on diesel emissions.

BMW bought Britain’s Rover Group, which included the Jaguar and Land Rover brands in 1994 only to sell Jaguar Land Rover to Ford in March 2000. In 2008 India’s Tata Group bought Jaguar and Land Rover from Ford.

Reuters & IOL