When TVS Motor Company bought Norton Motorcycles in the first half of 2020, one thing it knew would change was the Norton factory location. While sorting out the logistics of its new factory, Norton planned to rent its existing space at the old Donington location, but that would strictly be temporary. Soon, interim Norton CEO John Russell talked about the coming Solihull facility pretty regularly in interviews.
How are things coming along on that front? As of January 2021, the Norton team is in the process of making the move to Solar Park, Solihull, and getting the facility up to speed.
All of Norton’s operations will be based in this new location, including the design, engineering, and manufacturing portions of the business. TVS made a multi-million-pound investment in getting this factory fitted appropriately for all the jobs at hand, and the plan is to fully open by the end of March 2021.
So far, Norton is proud to say that it’s created 50 new jobs in the local area. It will also create more as the factory opens and begins the work of resurrecting the modern brand’s identity in earnest.
Machinery will be a combination of state-of-the art modern stuff and a few classic bits, as the company brought some of its specialist tooling equipment along for the ride. When your company is 122 years old, there will understandably be some things you can’t part with. All told, Norton says this will be the highest-tech facility any version of Norton has ever operated from in the company’s history.
What’s first up on the build list? As CEO Russell has previously discussed, the Commando Classic will be the first model to roll off the new line. The primary purpose of this decision is to fulfil existing customer deposits from the previous Norton administration, although there will likely be a few left over that new customers can purchase, as well. After that, it’s on to the V4SS.
Gallery: Norton Motorcycles Solihull Facility
“The opening of the new headquarters represents a significant step forward for Norton Motorcycles,” TVS joint managing director Sudarshan Venu said in a statement.
“The opening of this state-of-the-art facility will create the foundations for a sustainable long-term future of Norton. The new bikes will meet the world class standards our customers expect,” he continued.
“2020 has been a tough year for the world, but we are excited to be moving into our new home and we are delighted this has been created by the Norton and TVS teams in just 9 months. This new facility underpinned by strong quality processes will produce bikes truly worthy of the illustrious Norton brand and take it into the future.”
He concluded, “We are setting out to create a future for the company, our employees, our customers and our partners that lives up to the highest expectations and enable Norton to once again become the real force its history deserves.”