A Jaguar “four-door supercar” with a 200mph top speed is unveiled today ahead of its world debut at the Festival of Speed presented by Mastercard on June 30th.
JUN 28th 2017
Jaguar XE SV Project 8 – 6 things you need to know!
Among Jaguar road cars that have thrilled at Goodwood over the decades, the XE SV Project 8 is the daddy, the most powerful street-legal cat ever. Jaguar says it “sits at the pinnacle of the world’s performance sedans.
Jaguar is making a habit of unveiling its Special Vehicle Operations (SVO) editions at the Festival of Speed – you will remember that the speedster Project 7 F-Type had its debut on the hill in 2014. The mega XE is quite a bit gruntier even than that thanks to the most extreme version yet of the firm’s supercharged 5.0-litre V8 boasting a fulsome 592bhp.
It’s no one-off concept car either. Like F-Type Project 7, you can buy one! SVO is hand-assembling 300 cars at £150,000 each. They are available in two-seat (Track Pack) and four-seat versions and all are left-hookers. If Jaguar sticks to the blueprint set with the F-Type, the limited-edition special will be followed up by a regular production XE SVR – and what a rival for the BMW M4 and Merc-AMG C-class that could make.
At Goodwood there will be a pair of XE SV Project 8s to delight us: one will make the model’s dynamic debut on the hill on Friday June 30th while the other will be on static display in the Jaguar pavilion all weekend.
Six hundred horses make Project 8 the most powerful Jag road car ever – if we accept that the XJR-15, with upwards of 700bhp, was a TWR model. The XJ220, though, was definitely a Jaguar and while it had “only” 550bhp it did have a 212mph top speed, so in case you were wondering XE SV Project 8 can not claim to be the fastest Jag ever.
The only performance figures quoted so far are top speed 200mph and 0-62mph in 3.7 seconds (or 0-60 in 3.3 seconds if you prefer). Either way, it’s identical to the F-Type SVR. Not bad company to be in for a saloon most commonly seen in £30,000 160bhp diesel form!
So what does it take to turn such a mild-mannered four-door into “a thrilling mix of explosive power and dynamic agility” to quote Jaguar? Here’s GRR’s six-point whirlwind tour…
1. A rating of 600ps is the most we have seen for Jaguar Land Rover’s stalwart supercharged 5.0-litre V8 (the F-Type SVR has 575). Power peaks at 6500rpm and backing it up between 3500-5000rpm is 516 lb ft of torque. The extra is mostly down to better breathing, with a new titanium “variable active” exhaust system exiting through the rear diffuser. You just know this car is going to sound great.
2. It’s all-wheel drive and gets the familiar eight-speed Quickshift transmission with paddle-shift or with “pistolshift” central lever. It’s the first XE with an active electronic diff, with oil cooler.
3. It shouldn’t be afraid of serious lappery. This is the first Jag with Track Mode to tailor driveline and stability control systems and sharpen throttle and steering responses for circuit work. Brakes are a new carbon ceramic set-up, and Jaguar is claiming an industry first with silicon nitride ceramic wheel bearings. Ride height, front splitter and rear wing can be manually adjusted for track use, with 122kg of downforce at 186mph.
4. It’s a two or four-seater. An optionally available Track Pack ditches the rear seats and replaces the fronts with carbon fibre racing buckets with four-point harnesses, saving 12.2kg. Trim is inside is gloss carbon fibre trim and Alcantara.
5. It looks the business. The new body (Jaguar says only the roof and front door skins are unaltered) brings new panels bearing a multitude of bulges, ducts and vents in aluminium and carbon fibre to save weight (it weighs in at 1745kg), keep all the oily bits cool and accommodate Jaguar’s biggest ever road wheels: 11x20 inches at the back, wearing 305 section Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres.
6. And last but not least…the XE badge can be deleted as a no cost option!
Want to see the XE SV Project 8 in action? Tickets are still available for the 2017 Goodwood Festival of Speed. For more information visit ticketing.goodwood.com!
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