UK's Automotive Industry in Coventry University Speech

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【Summary】The former CEO of Aston Martin and COO of Nissan warns that the UK is running out of time to secure the future of its automotive industry. He urges the country to invest in more Gigafactories and catch up with other countries in battery and auto industries. The speaker emphasizes the importance of battery production for automakers and suggests that the UK needs six more Gigafactories. He also mentions that China, the US, and the EU are ahead in this sector. The speaker, Dr.

FutureCar Staff    Sep 22, 2023 11:18 PM PT
UK's Automotive Industry in Coventry University Speech

The former CEO of Aston Martin and COO of Nissan has warned that the UK is running out of time to secure the future of its automotive industry. Andy Palmer, speaking at Coventry University's Chancellor's Dinner, stated that the UK needs to take action and establish six more Gigafactories in addition to the ones already announced. This comes after Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced a delay in the ban on new petrol car sales.

Among the attendees at the event was West Midlands Mayor Andy Street, who has been advocating for a Gigafactory in Coventry. The campaign for this Gigafactory is led by Coventry City Council, as Coventry was once the center of the UK's motor industry. Jaguar Land Rover still has a significant presence in Coventry and nearby in Warwickshire.

Coventry University, known for producing engineering and car design graduates, is also conducting groundbreaking research on hydrogen fuels and future transport solutions.

Dr. Andy Palmer, the keynote speaker at the event, expressed his uncertainty about the future of the industry. He emphasized that the UK has been slow to invest in battery and auto industries compared to the rest of the world. According to Dr. Palmer, automakers will establish themselves where batteries are manufactured, as importing them on a large scale is not feasible. He believes that the UK needs at least six more Gigafactories to meet the demand for cars and explore other battery applications. Dr. Palmer stressed the urgency for the UK to act quickly and effectively, as countries like China, America, and the EU are already far ahead in this field.

Dr. Palmer, who has a doctorate in Engineering Management, is recognized as the Godfather of EVs in the UK. He played a significant role in launching the Nissan Leaf and is currently involved with various companies developing green technology. These include Palmer Automotive Ltd, Pod Point, Hilo Ltd (an EV scooter manufacturer), IONETIC (a battery pack technology company), InoBat (a European battery company), and Brill Power (a battery management technology platform). While Dr. Palmer is committed to electrification as the primary path to achieving Net Zero, he believes that alternative solutions should also be explored.

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