The opening of the world’s biggest multi-level Jaguar Land Rover showroom in Qatar shows the entrepreneurial spirit of the Alfardans, Jaguar Land Rover CEO Professor Dr Ralf Speth has said.
“This biggest sales facility is not in the US, not in Europe, and not in China, it is in Qatar,” he told Gulf Times, stressing that “Qatar can really be proud about it, and reflects the vision of the (Alfardan) family”.
Alfardan Premier Motors Co, the official retailer of Jaguar Land Rover vehicles in Qatar, opened the 7,800sqm state-of-the-art showroom in Lusail City on Monday, dubbed as the height of its market leadership and legacy milestones in the local and regional automotive industry.
“I admire Omar Alfardan for his entrepreneurial spirit, also taking risk but also for the spectrum he is working in, it is not just cars,” said Dr Speth, citing the long-term partnership between Jaguar Land Rover and Alfardan Premier Motors.
He said Omar’s father, Alfardan Group chairman Hussain Ibrahim Alfardan, started a variety of businesses from scratch and, having the required vision, "worked hard for the people and the society.”
About Jaguar Land Rover, Dr Speth said the company does not make ordinary vehicles but what he described as very special products for “very special customers.” “This is exactly the field we are leading in many areas.”
In Qatar and the region, he noted that people "have high requests for premium technology", from electronic features to electronic architecture – a reason why innovation in design, engineering and technology are the core of the company’s business.
“We have a very good design team and this combination of that is special British design and combined with this kind of engineering, creativity and technological breakthroughs to deliver it,” Dr Speth said. “We try to do our homework for the customer and you will see that it can stand out.”
“At the end of the day, we have a clear goal, our purpose to exist is just we have to delight our customers so that they love the experiences they make with us, that is the first and the overall purpose,” he said.
He stressed that Jaguar Land Rover also focuses on protecting and preserving the environment by helping significantly reduce carbon emissions.
Dr Speth calls it ‘Destination Zero’, the company’s strategic direction for health and safety, which means “a journey to zero emissions, zero accidents, and zero congestion”. “I think that is the future.”
“We are really very proud to deliver the I-PACE,” he said, highlighting the Sport Utility Vehicle’s various environment-friendly features. “This is a zero emission vehicle that shows the direction we are going.”
“Mobility is a human right, we all need mobility one or in the other form, but protecting the environment is an obligation, both come together, and bringing destination zero forward so that we can contribute to this better mobility,” Dr Speth explained.
Besides the I-PACE, Dr Speth added that they also have a good portfolio of hybrid vehicles, including the Range Rover Evoque, which have lower (carbon) emissions.
“And in that context, I also would like to highlight that I still think that a modern diesel engine is a very good engine, lower CO2 (emission),” he said.
About facing a number of challenges such as Brexit and the US-China trade war, Dr Speth said: “I was very outspoken in terms of Brexit, but on the other side, I absolutely respect each and every democratic solution.”