Jaguar Land Rover Buys Bowler

Bailed out and bought lock, stock and barrel by Jaguar Land Rover, small yet renowned maker of extreme rally raid vehicles, Bowler’s future could be a very interesting one indeed.

Dating back to 1984, Bowler’s modus operandi has been in developing extreme rally raid and other vehicles, including ones based on original space frame designs, powered by powerful Jaguar engines and styled after Land Rovers. Now part of the Indian-owned British automaker Jaguar Land Rover Bowler joins its skunkworks Special Vehicles Operations outfit alongside its SV, Vehicle Personalisation and Classic sub-divisions.

Most famously known for the Land Rover Defender-styled Wildcat, Bowler came to wider public prominence with a memorable feature on Top Gear back in 2003. Seeing a significant expansion in 2014 in developing its new cross Sector Platform, Bolwer’s business includes building vehicles for road and race, as well as operating as an engineering firm for custom, prototype and production projects.

And while JLR itself may not be in the best position to make new acquisitions as of the moment, Bowler’s addition as the fourth pillar of the brand’s SVO division is sure to bring a wealth of expertise. And we frankly can’t wait to see what madcap off-road shenanigans – be they for road, race or show – that will ensue from integrating such an enthusiast-driven small-time manufacturer into JLR, and its still much deeper pockets.

Press Release


18 December 2019 – We are pleased to announce Jaguar Land Rover has acquired Bowler, which now forms part of its fast-growing Special Vehicle Operations division.

Our expertise in all-terrain vehicle dynamics, low-volume production techniques, and proving the durability of components under extreme conditions, is a natural fit alongside Special Vehicle Operations’ other businesses: SV, Vehicle Personalisation and Classic. All four businesses amplify the key attributes of Jaguar or Land Rover vehicles to create distinctive world-class products.

Michael van der Sande, Managing Director, Jaguar Land Rover Special Vehicle Operations, said: “For almost 35 years the Bowler name has stood for innovation and success, with a reputation forged by its participation in the world’s toughest off-road motorsport competitions. It’s exciting that we’re now in a position to participate in and lead the Bowler brand’s future as part of Jaguar Land Rover.

“At Special Vehicle Operations we are all eager to start working with our new colleagues at Bowler. Adding the Bowler team’s skills and experience to those of SV, Vehicle Personalisation and Classic is a key step in our strategy to create an exciting and diverse portfolio of products and businesses within Special Vehicle Operations.”

Our immediate focus is on ensuring continuity of support for Bowler customers during this transition to Jaguar Land Rover, so please don’t hesitate to contact a member of the Bowler team, as before. Jaguar Land Rover has offered continuation of employment to all permanent Bowler employees, so the existing team will continue to support you.

About Special Vehicle Operations

Special Vehicle Operations is a specialist team of Jaguar and Land Rover designers, engineers and technicians dedicated to amplifying the performance, luxury and capability attributes of Jaguar and Land Rover vehicles:

SV designs, engineers and produces high specification SV-branded Jaguars and Land Rovers, amplifying key characteristics including performance and luxury.

Vehicle Personalisation undertakes bespoke commissions, one-off vehicles and is responsible for Jaguar Land Rover’s vehicle accessories and Premium Palette paint.

Classic is the official source of authentic cars, expert services, genuine parts and unforgettable experiences for classic Jaguar and Land Rover enthusiasts worldwide.

Bowler, which comprises the businesses of Bowler Brands Limited, Bowler Motor Sport Limited and Bowler Manufacturing Limited, manufactures all-terrain performance cars and rally raid vehicles. Wilkin Chapman Business Solutions Ltd assisted with the transaction via the Administration of the previous Bowler companies.

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