Aston Martin has confirmed that it will build electric cars at its new factory in St Athan, in South Wales.
The former WW2 airfield will be home to Aston’s Lagonda sub-brand, which is heralded as the “world's first zero-emission luxury marque.”
Aston Martin will also produce an electric version of its Rapide four-door saloon called the Rapide E at the Welsh plant from 2019.
Dr Andy Palmer, Aston Martin’s president and CEO, said the announcement demonstrated Aston Martin's ambition to become a key developer of electric vehicle technology.
“Aston Martin sees itself as a future leader in the development of zero-emission technologies,” he said.
“The Rapide E will spearhead development of Aston Martin’s low- and zero-emission vehicle strategy. With the reintroduction of the Lagonda brand, this is a demonstration of how electrification features prominently in our business plan moving forward.
“I am delighted that St Athan will be our ‘Home of Electrification’ for both the Aston Martin and Lagonda brands.”
The factory, near Cardiff, is said to be in the “third and final stage” of construction, and Aston Martin says it will become a “state-of-the-art assembly facility” when finished.
Three former RAF superhangars are being converted to create the factory, which has already provided employment for 150 people and will eventually create up to 750 jobs.
International Trade Secretary Dr Liam Fox MP said: “I’m delighted that Aston Martin has chosen St Athan as its centre for electrification and the home of Lagonda production in a move that will create hundreds of high skilled jobs in the coming years. The UK has world leading expertise in manufacturing and developing low carbon vehicles and this investment is yet another vote of confidence in the our highly competitive automotive industry.
“My international economic department continues to work with investors to create jobs in all parts of the country, maintaining the UK’s position as Europe’s premier investment destination.”
Wales' First Minister, Carwyn Jones, said the St Athan manufacturing site was a vote of confidence for Wales.
“I am very proud of Aston Martin’s decision to locate its new manufacturing facility in St Athan,” he said. “It shows a huge vote of confidence in the Welsh government’s can-do attitude and in the package of support that we can offer to businesses that want to work with us.
“Today’s announcement that St Athan will also be the ‘Home of Electrification’ for both Aston Martin and Lagonda is another huge win for Wales. It is a genuine testament to the reputation, dedication and skills of our workforce but also an excellent and very tangible example of how Welsh Government support can act as the catalyst for further economic growth and job creation.”