Low-carbon vehicles

Coventry and Warwickshire are located at the heart of the UK’s main automotive cluster in the Midlands.

Tracing its origins back to the arrival of the car in Europe over 120 years ago, the area is home to 35 automotive and off-highway brands, including 12 vehicle manufacturing sites, and 15 research and development centres, maintaining and developing a unique mix of skills and supply chain in automotive design and engineering.

The area is particularly strong in research and development activity, in low-carbon electric and hybrid powertrain technology, light-weighting and CAV (Connected and Autonomous Vehicles). These activities are driven forward by investment from local car manufacturers, leading university research, a unique cluster of skills and access to cutting-edge innovation and technology.

You’re in good company

Coventry and Warwickshire is a hotspot of automotive research and development in the UK and Europe. With the global HQ and research and development operations for Jaguar Land Rover and Aston Martin, and close proximity to European research and development operations for Changan, SAIC and Geely of China, and Tata and Ashok Leyland of India. This is the leading vehicle development and powertrain centre in the UK, with a unique mix of expertise, skills and associated supply chain.

Europe’s leading automotive research and development campus MIRA Technology Park is located in the area, and as well as state of the art testing facilities and 100km of track, its campus includes leading brands Aston Martin, Bentley, Bosch and GKN. Other global names with research and development centres locally include Triumph and Dennis Eagle.

Recent investments locally have included Geely London Taxi’s £300m investment into a new manufacturing and engineering centre to build a new range of zero-emissions vehicles at Ansty; Lightning Hybrids MIRA facility, Detroit Electric’s new assembly site in Leamington Spa and BMW’s £750m UK investment, including at its Hams Hall powertrain facility, which supplies plants in the UK and overseas. BMW produces thousands of engines every year at Hams Hall, including the hybrid engine for the i8 supercar.

Ideas and innovation

Low-carbon powertrain

  • The national Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) in Coventry represents a £1bn, 10-year commitment from the Government to invest in powertrain technology of the future.
  • WMG, located at the University of Warwick, works collaboratively with business to simplify the transfer of cutting-edge university research to industry. It is a High-Value Manufacturing Catapult focusing on Low-Carbon Mobility: Lightweight Product/System Optimisation; Energy Storage and Management; and Digital Validation and Verification
  • The National Automotive Innovation Campus opening in 2017 in Coventry will co-locate 1,000 engineers and academics to develop low-carbon powertrain technology of the future.
  • Centre for Mobility and Transport at Coventry University works across faculties and focuses on the design and engineering of future transport systems, including the growing influence of the internet and connectivity.

Europe’s new automotive research and development campus

MIRA Technology Park outside of Nuneaton is Europe’s most exciting automotive research and development engineering campus. The 187-acre site includes 100km of test track and the facilities of engineering consultants Horiba-MIRA. It is one of the UK’s leading Enterprise Zones, and the only one with a transport tech focus, facilitating simplified planning and tax incentives, combined with Horiba-MIRA’s experience working with global firms locating in the UK for the first time. The growing list of tenants includes Sanoh of Japan, Bosch of Germany, Lockheed Martin of the US and Haldex of Sweden.

Skills and training

Coventry and Warwickshire are well served by local colleges and universities. In particular, the area is at the forefront of UTCs (university technical colleges).

  • 54,000 students studying at the University of Warwick and Coventry University. Both universities have strong links to advanced engineering
  • Over 100,000 graduates per year from 15 Universities within a 1-hour drive of Coventry and Warwickshire.
  • The WMG Academy for Young Engineers for 14 to 18-year-olds is led by businesses and a university.
  • The MIRA Academy supports engineering skills for MIRA Technology Park staff in association with four local universities and colleges
  • Advanced Manufacturing Training Centre delivers a range of training and experience on real-life projects – from apprenticeship programmes to executive-level training.
  • Institute for Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering – A joint Unipart Manufacturing Group and Coventry University brings together the best in academia, industry and research and development in a live manufacturing environment, developing industry-ready engineering graduates

Connectivity

Situated in the centre of the UK, Coventry and Warwickshire is an enviable location for any business to be located. Being at the heart of Britain’s transport network provides links to road and rail that the rest of the UK strives for.

  • fast connection to London in an hour via rail
  • direct access to the UK's motorway network
    (M6, M40, M42, M45, M69 with close proximity to M1 and M5)
  • easy access to worldwide destinations via Birmingham Int Airport or the UK's leader in air freight, East Midlands Airport.
  • over 90% of properties have access to internationally competitive broadband

How we can help

Identifying a location to establish a new business or relocating an existing one can seem like a huge decision. In order to help, Coventry and Warwickshire offer the following free and confidential services to businesses:

  • commercial property searches and location advice
  • excellent local intelligence – from demographics to sector analysis
  • introductions to local networks and organisations
  • employment and skills development support
  • access to free and confidential advice and support via the Coventry and Warwickshire Growth Hub: providing a seamless service regardless of which support service you require
  • helping your employees with information about the housing, schooling and leisure opportunities across the area