Around 75 former Rover employees will be given new jobs at Ricardo to help the British engineering and supplier group work with BMW on engines and transmissions for the New Mini.
Ricardo says it will employ the former Longbridge plant staff at its nearby Leamington Spa operation in the English midlands. BMW has retained ownership of the New Mini project despite selling off most of the rest of the Rover Group in May. Land Rover was bought by Ford, while Rover's passenger car business was sold to a team led by ex-Rover managing director John Towers.
The New Mini will be made at BMW's Cowley, Oxford plant, starting early next year. The 75 new Ricardo recruits will form part of a larger Ricardo team dedicated to the Mini project. The team will work with BMW production and engineering staff both in the UK and Germany, as well as the many UK and international component suppliers who will contribute to the new Mini program.
The partnership arrangement between BMW and Ricardo will last for approximately 18 months until Mini production is well under way.