Land Rover parts shortages are leaving drivers destitute
4 mins read

Land Rover parts shortages are leaving drivers destitute

Do you have a Land Rover or Jaguar? Take care of it carefully, because any failure may mean that it will be out of service for some time. Three months after Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) admitted it had a “significant parts shortage”, there is no sign the problem has been resolved. The estimated number of up to 5,000 customer cars held at dealerships due to lack of spare parts shows no sign of significant reduction, with one source saying the situation is “worse in any case.”

This is despite the JLR group giving its authorized dealers permission to fit (unauthorised) parts to customers’ cars to clear the backlog, although the company denies some claims that dealers have been authorized to fit second-hand parts.

In an official statement, JLR Group said: “The use of locally sourced parts from our retailers for replacement and repair is a long-established practice in exceptional circumstances, provided the parts are fit for purpose and meet JLR specifications. This is clearly stated in each warranty agreement.”

Unipart declined to comment.

The issue arose as Tata-owned JLR changed its delivery system in the wake of the Covid-19 crisis and consolidated parts deliveries from 18 warehouses into one huge warehouse space at the Mercia Park retail estate in Appleby Magna, Leicestershire.

A huge JLR warehouse space on the Mercia Park retail development in Appleby Magna, LeicestershireA huge JLR warehouse space on the Mercia Park retail development in Appleby Magna, Leicestershire

Huge JLR warehouse space at Mercia Park retail development in Appleby Magna, Leicestershire – IM Properties

This huge parts warehouse supplies JLR markets around the world and is run by Unipart, the former parts division of Austin Rover and British Leyland, which now markets itself as a logistics, supply chain and manufacturing consultancy.

“This was a very serious issue for our customers,” says a JLR spokesman. “The new system relies on pickers and packers, and the sheer volume of work has turned it into a nightmare, requiring new staff to be recruited and trained.

“Our retailers are struggling with this and we are putting pressure on our contract partner, but these things take time.”

In response to questions on the issue in November, JLR CEO Adrian Mardell said he was “really unhappy” with the situation and predicted a resolution of the issue “in the first quarter” (2024).

However, feedback from some independent dealers and interested parties suggests the problem is getting worse in places.

“We have a customer’s Range Rover Evoque waiting for parts with no expected delivery date,” said one independent repairer, “so what do I tell the customer…?”

Three months after Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) admitted it had a Three months after Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) admitted it had a

Three months after Jaguar Land Rover admitted to a parts shortage, there is no sign the problem has been resolved

However, some of the other independent companies we contacted have had almost no impact, such as fuel injection specialists who source parts directly from original equipment manufacturers (OE) and avoid bottlenecks at a mega warehouse in Leicestershire .

“It’s complete nonsense,” says Ian Ferguson, founder and managing director of Reject My Car, a Glasgow-based consumer advocacy firm. “I’d say it’s as bad as ever and over half of our inquiries are for JLR products, so there hasn’t been any deterioration.”

Ferguson claims he is dealing with a major dealer in Scotland whose service manager told his customer: “This is what you get when you buy a used Land Rover…”

James Baggott, editor-in-chief Car dealer magazine, which broke the story of JLR parts shortages last October, states: “We are hearing from many dealers and customers and, honestly, the situation is no better than it was in October.

“With so many customers waiting for parts on the road, dealers are having very difficult conversations with customers. At some point, the network ran out of replacement cars.”

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