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Editor/Photographer : Mark Charles

 

February 5 2008

Jaguar runs model plans past Tata

Jaguar is eyeing a significant expansion of its model range with at least three new models, after its sell-off by Ford, most likely to Tata Motors of India.

Executives and engineers are eyeing a new GBP40,000 two-seat sports car, a two- door coupe version of the XF saloon and most radically, a four-door version of the XK luxury coupe.

None of the three models are officially signed off, but all three have been presented to Tata Motors' management and will be key new programmes for the Indian automaker to evaluate and decide whether to invest.

Privately, insiders favour the two-seat sports car, dubbed the F-type, as the highest priority. It would be pitched against the BMW Z4, Mercedes-Benz SLK and Porsche Boxster.

Although Jag has the concept clear, it hasn't yet decided on the industrial strategy for manufacture. Engineers favour the car as an aluminium variant of the XK, other executives favourite it as a steel variant of the new XF.

The alloy F-type would be four inches (100mm) shorter than today's XK, sit on a narrower track and be designed with an engine bay capable of taking both V6 and V8 engines. The V6 would be the volume seller and the V8 reserved for high end performance versions.

Jaguar has been interested in a two-seat sportscar since 2000, when it showed the F-type concept at Detroit.

But the handsome design wasn't based on a particular platform and Jag couldn't industrialise the design. It eventually turned into an alloy, mid- engine design that was canned when Jag hit financial trouble four years ago.

Easier to get into production is the two-door, XF coupe. Models of this car have been built at Jag's Whitley advanced design studio in Coventry, based around the two-inch lower roof-line of the C-XF concept. Apart from this detail, the XF coupe is understood to share its design and components with the XF saloon.

Unlikely is a soft top convertible version. Engineering studies suggest that the weight of added platform strengthening would be too high and the size of the fabric roof needed too difficult to engineer.

Also vying for future investment is a long-wheelbase version of the XK, extended along the lines of Aston Martin's DB9-based Rapide.

The XK four door would have an extra pair of rear doors and a small rear cabin, compromised to keep the XK's elegant roofline. It would also compete against Porsche's forthcoming Panamera and high-end Merc CLS models, as well as the Rapide.

Supporters of this design believe it to be an excellent brand extension, but a secondary priority to the F-type two-seater.

Room for the swooping four-door XK in Jag's range would be opened up when the re-skinned XJ, aka project X351, debuts in late 2009 for sale in early 2010.

Essentially a new 'top-hat' on the alloy XJ chassis, it would get a major interior rework to squeeze in more legroom without having to extend the current XJ's footprint.

Similar clever re-packaging has made the new XF roomier than the outgoing S-type, even though it shares the same wheelbase.

Also in Jag's new product pipeline is a 500bhp-plus XKR-R range-topper and designs for a crossover XF.

Designs of the latter model have split Jaguar, with US dealers clamouring for the model, while Coventry high-ups prefer to leave 4x4s/SUVs to Land_Rover.

Headlines

XF - First impressions

Jaguar reveals the new generation X-type

Jaguar/Land Rover bidders need more time

Spied: Jaguar XF-R

'Jaguar' badge for the chop - designer

Revealed - The all-new 2009 Jaguar XF

O’Driscoll replaces Boerio as Jaguar MD

Jaguar collects customer service plaudits

Jaguar take sthe number one position in the 2007 J.D. Power study

Ford readies Jaguar and Ford for sale

Roger Putnam receives CBE

2007 Jaguar XK wins Autonerve magazine "Best Convertible" award

Jaguar X-typenamed top aspirational luxury car

Jaguar XKR convertible tops 2007 best road trip car list

Jaguar XJ named one of the safest cars

Robert Motors celebrates 25 years of success

The all-new Jaguar C-XF

The all-new Jaguar C-XF revealed

2006 Headlines

S type revised

Top Gear crowns Jaguar XK 'Car of the year 2006

Jaguar cars announces the new Jaguar XF

Jaguar Canada announces all-new-2007 XKR coupe and convertible pricing and option packges

Jaguar USA announces 2007 XKR coupe and convertible pricing and option packages

Jaguar supports home show with global debut of supercharged XKR

Jaguar announces its new advanced vehicle entertainment technology

Callum brothers win 2006 Jim Clark memorial award

Jaguar XJ voted best large executive car at the Auto Express Used Car Honours 2006

Jaguar Land Rover North America announces new vice president of customer service

Jaguar sells off Browns Lane site

AAA names the Jaguar XJ8L as top car pick for 2006

Ford says of Jaguar - safe in our hands

The new Jaguar XK winner of "What Car?" award

Jaguar announces all-new 2007 XK coupe and convertible pricing

2005 Headlines

Jaguar reveals all-new XK convertible

All-new Jaguar XK premieres world-first deployable bonnet system

All-new Jaguar XK is unveiled atFrankfurt show

Jaguar unveils all-new XK sports car

Jaguar announces new vice president

Tne new XJ 2.7 diesel and 2006MY XJ range

Jaguar brings tpgether emerging artists

Daimler returns with an all-new model, the Super Eight.

Geoff Polites is appointed CEO of Jaguar

June sales

New XJ 2.7 Diesel and 2006MY XJ range

Jaguar announces mobility program

Jaguar XJ wins best luxury car in the 2005 fleet world honours

Jaguar cars for Jaguar cats

April Newsletter

Ford's newest atShanghai

Jaguar revises prices for 2005 S-type and XJ models

Jaguar appoints new global Advertising Agency

February newsletter

Jaguar XJ6 wins award

Jaguar X-type diesel even more tax efficient

Tim Watson appointed new communications chief

Jaguar's best ever year in Europe

Jaguar advanced lightweight coupe makes world debut

Limited edition Jaguar XK 'VICTORY'

Jaguar Canada sales reports

2004 Headlines

More job losses likely say unions

Bonspeed X type at SEMA, Las Vegas

Jaguar scoopsScottish luxury and diesel categoryawards

Japanese Grand Prix - Preview

Jaguar Canada reports September sales

Chinese Grand Prix – Race

Chinese Grand Prix – Saturday Qualifying

Chinese Grand Prix – Friday Practice Sessions

Jaguar workers stalk Ford in Paris

Jaguar workers back call for industrial action ballot

Jaguar to drop British Racing Green

Jaguar leaps forwardin 2004 in
J.D. Power study

Jaguar North America expands conservation trust

Jaguar question to be put to Commons

Jaguar production to end at Browns Lane

Jaguar cuts production due to poor US sales

Belgian Grand Prix - Race

Belgian Grand Prix - Qualifying

Belgian Grand Prix - Practice

Belgian Grand Prix - preview

Jaguar factory capacity cut announcement "weeks away"

Jaguar fears on factory closure

Jaguar North America dedicates its archives

Job cuts "unlikely" at Jaguar

Jaguar team to be come Ford?

Jaguar exhibits the iconic E-type at the design museum

Plans to cut Jaguar production

Jaguar "People Solutions" in the frame for prestigious award

European Grand Prix - Qualifying

European Grand Prix - Practice

European Grand Prix - Preview

Jaguar at design festival

Steinmetz& Jaguar Racing

Monaco Grand Prix - race

Monaco Grand Prix - qualifying

Monaco Grand Prix - practice

Monaco Grand Prix - preview

‘The movies’ meets Jaguar

Jaguars invade Normandy

Spanish Grand Prix - race

Spanish Grand Prix - qualifying

Spanish Grand Prix - practice

Spanish Grand Prix - preview

Jaguar U.S.announce executive appoinments

April 2004 U.S. sales

2003 Headlines

"Browns Lane plant to close" rumour

Jaguar select edition captures award

Jaguar racing engine makes successful debut

Japan Grand Prix

X-type estate makes its debut at Frankfurt

Jaguar R-D6 concept unveiled at Frankfurt

Hungarian Grand Prix

The New Jaguar X-Type Estate

Jaguar opens new test centre at the Nürburgring

TWR history goes under the hammer

French Grand Prix - Saturday Qualifying

The new X-type 2.0D.

Canadian grand prix - preview

Jaguar to premiere new V6 diesel engine

New Jaguar sports car sets the pace

Jaguar boss announces retirement

Lap record eases heat on Jaguar

TWR is placed in receivership

Canadian debut of the 2004 XJ sedan

Jaguar Daimler Heritage Trust at Techno Classica Essen

XKSS sells for $1.1 million

Jaguar to temporarily suspend X-type production

New XJ prices released

Jaguar R4 unveiled

F1 car launch

2002 Headlines

XKSS for sale at auction

Driver change at F1 team

Indianapolis X type

Jaguar from latest Bond film at British Motor Show

New XJ released

Revised XK released

Jaguars at Monterey

Changes in management line-up

F type on hold

New XJ8 for 2003

Morse Mark 2 sells at auction

Jaguar announces expanded 2002 Trans-Am Series Contingency Award Program

Jaguar Heritage on display at Techno Classica Essen

400 bhp S type R launched

Jaguar Racing unveiled its 2002 challenger, the Jaguar R3

2001 Headlines

XJ13 not for sale

Bike ace signs for Jaguar

New 2 litre X type

Jaguar Racing and ChevronTexaco to end their technical relationship

Frank Sinatra's XJ40 sold at auction

New MD for Jaguar Racing

Changes at the top

Jaguar presents the R Coupe concept

Two new special editions

New organization for North America

New XJ6 test vehicle

F-TYPE roadster production to go-ahead

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