Set to be in showrooms in December of this year, the next-generation Jaguar XJ is long overdue. If I’m not mistaken, I think that the last XJ was built during the reign of the third Roman Emperor, Caligula. So it’s been a while.
Well now that you’ve followed the jump, I hope you’re not too dissapointed to realize that the image before the jump is the only one we currently have. Sorry ’bout that.
From what we can see of this lone image, the XJ will be more coupe-like, much like the Aston Martin Rapide. We are expecting the XJ to be fitted with the same V6 and V8 petrol and diesel engines as the XF sedan but there will still be a spot reserved for a steam-powered super-powered XJ-R, which will presumably have somewhere in the 600 hp range. I wouldn’t hold my breath on the R version though, fuel economy standards are tightening at the same time as people’s belts, meaning that production of the R may not be viable. Another victim of the carpocalypse, then.
Interestingly, the XJ has been rumoured to get an electric plug-in hybrid version; apparently using technology from the Fisker Karma. Sounds fantastic, but again, the viability of this may be in question.
One of the cool design elements that we can see so far is the blacked-out C-pillar and the blacked-out front cross member on the roof. Not being able to see these when the car is painted in lighter colours will no doubt lend themselves to a more coupe-like appearance. In the aesthetics category, the XJ should compete well against the seductive Rapide, leaving the Panamera to draw in the visually-impaired among us. Funny how the British cars are so good-looking.
The XJ will compete, in terms of price and features, with the BMW F01 7-series and the recently-refreshed Mercedes S-Class. This means that it will slot in between the CLS four-door coupe at the bottom end and the Panamera/Rapide at the top end. Should do nicely then.
It looks like Ratan Tata got in at just the right time – Jaguar is on the cusp of brilliance and we can’t wait to find out the rest of the details on the XJ when it’s revealed on July 9, 2009 in London.