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Major Birmingham jobs blow as Aston Martin reveals Wales plant

Sutton Coldfield has lost out in the race to attract the James Bond car-maker after a factory in Glamorgan was revealed

Aston Martin CEO Andy Palmer unveiles the DBX Concept at the Geneva motor show
Aston Martin CEO Andy Palmer unveiles the DBX Concept at the Geneva motor show

Birmingham has missed out in the race to secure a new Aston Martin plant after the car-maker revealed it was investing in Wales instead.

The James Bond car-maker was understood to have favoured a move to Sutton Coldfield but the Peddimore site, carved out of green belt, would prove too costly.

Instead, Aston Martin has confirmed that St Athan in Glamorgan has been chosen as the location of its second UK manufacturing facility.

It represents a blow for the city, with 1,000 Aston Martin jobs and a further 3,000 in the supply chain now bound for Wales.

However, there was a smaller boost for the Midlands with the car-maker announcing it would be producing its recently-announced all-electric RapidE at its headquarters in Gaydon, Warwickshire, from 2018.

Aston Martin bosses visited Peddimore on several occasions and it remained in the running until this winter, but Glamorgan won out.

The area of Peddimore that is to be redeveloped
The area of Peddimore that Aston Martin looked at

Dr. Andrew Palmer, chief executive of Aston Martin said: “During our 103-year history, Aston Martin has become famous for making beautiful hand-crafted cars in England.

"Through a detailed evaluation of over 20 potential global locations for this new manufacturing facility, we were consistently impressed with the focus on quality, cost and speed from the Welsh Government team. As a great British company, we look forward to St Athan joining Gaydon as our second centre of hand-crafted manufacturing excellence.”

As previously reported in the Mail, Aston Martin bosses had considered moving the headquarters of the world-famous operation to Sutton Coldfield if they could agree a deal at Peddimore.

While the giant space had the space, the value of the land made it the most expensive option available.

However, Prime Minister David Cameron said the commitment to the West Midlands was good news for the region.

He said: “Aston Martin is an iconic British brand and the decision to invest here shows real confidence in our economy. With our economic strengths and easy access to European markets, the UK automotive sector is thriving. It is one of the biggest in Europe – and the most productive – and Aston’s creation of up to 1,000 new jobs in Wales and the West Midlands is welcome news.”

Aston Martin unveils its DB10

The new Glamorgan plant will occupy some 90 acres, with some Ministry of Defence facilities being “repurposed”.

St Athan will be the sole production facility for a new Aston Martin DBX crossover vehicle which it hopes will help it increase exports to China.

Meanwhile, Aston Martin will commence production in the autumn at Gaydon of the new DB11, the replacement for the iconic DB9 and the first car to be launched under the company’s Second Century plan.

Over the course of the next five years, the company will both replace and expand its entire sports car portfolio. Starting with DB11, sports car manufacturing will be centered at Gaydon with the facility progressively expanding production to a planned maximum volume of 7,000 sports cars a year by 2020.

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