50 years on from the release of the E-Type, Jaguar could not have come up with a better way of marking the occasion than releasing the XKR-S.
The firm’s latest sports car is a fitting homage to its most iconic creation – fast, beautiful and, as always with the company’s creations, posses excellent handling.
They say never judge a book by its cover but you know you are in for a treat the moment you feast your eyes on the new Jaguar, which will hit dealerships and leasers in September. It just looks so mean and purposeful.
The menacing rear spoiler and extended carbon fibre front splitter indicate you are in store for some serious power. They could not be more right. The five litre V8 supercharged petrol engine churns out a huge 542bhp, not to mention 502lb of torque.
In the real world that translates to lightning quick acceleration of 0-60mph in just 4.2 seconds and a top speed of 186mph – enough to challenge any modern sports coupe.
The standard XKR performance is augmented by a new version of the adaptive dynamics suspension and new active sports exhaust. It rides lower and has stiffer springs and dampers hiding behind the lightweight 20″ Vulcan alloy wheels, not to mention huge steel/aluminium monobloc brake calipers with massive vented discs and much bigger friction pads.
The performance styling does not end there. The unique front design also features side intakes, twin nacelles and horizontal slots in the bonnet’s leading edge to cut levels of heat and under-bonnet lift. Extended side sills also draw attention to the vehicle’s ground-hugging contours.
Of course, under the bonnet, modern technology provides impressive economy and emissions figures. A fuel consumption of 23mpg beats most of its peers while the 292g/km CO2 emissions is also impressive for such a ferocious sports car.
One thing it does possess over the E-Type is a myriad of mod cons and handy gadgets. The intuitive 7” touch screen computer controls the majority of cabin features, including a Sat Nav system and climate controls, and is remarkably easy to use. The portable audio interface means you can connect your iPod or other mass storage device so you can have the perfect soundtrack to accompany your drive.
There are various cabin designs that incorporate carbon and leather and give a neat, minimalistic finish. The interior range can be found on the Jaguar XKR-S website, all incorporating the 16-way adjustable seats which ensure you are in for a comfortable ride.
The performance is admirable. Aside from the blistering speed the XKR-S boasts more responsive handling than its standard counterpart. There is less loss of movement at the steering wheel and it turns in much quicker. The six speed automatic gearbox is smooth beyond belief, uniquely intuitive and precise.
The vehicle will retail from about £97,000 and is one of the best cars in its class. Therefore, on the 50th anniversary of the release of the legendary E-Type, the new Jaguar keeps the firm at the cutting edge of the luxury car industry.