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The Mercury Cars Guide : March 20th 2010
Saturday, March 20, 2010 Classifieds 62 300 400 • carsguide.com.au ---11 Jag set to revisit the E-Type A sportscar hero is the new priority for Jaguar and will hit show showrooms within two years. Paul Gover reports MOVING ON: Jaguar's XJ sedan has recently hit the road, but Jag's next focus is a sleek new sportscar. Jaguar sources confirmed the sports car will be built in aluminium, most likely with the engine in the front, and the powerplants are expected to be V6 and V8s AS Jaguar's XF sport sedan racks up solid sales around the world, and the flagship XJ hits the road, Jaguar has shifted focus to creating a sports car with the same impact as the E-Type of the 1960s. It has no plans to go retro with a 21st century E-Type, and is not even planning to use the same name, but knows its new two-seater must be something special. Now the real work starts. ''It's an exciting time for us now,'' says Jaguar's design chief, Ian Cal- lum. ''I'm not trying to reference the E-Type, although there are things about the E-Type I like. ''You cannot do a car like that these days, with all the regulations and things. ''Above all, it's got to be a pretty car.'' Jaguar has yet to confirm a sports car program, only referring to the project officially as ''our fourth car'' --- after the two-door XK, XF and XJ --- but it is an open secret in talks during the XJ launch in Paris. ''We are working on sports cars. It has to be something like that,'' Callum says. The man who heads the sports car project, Jaguar Land Rover's head of product development Phil Hodgkin- son, says the car is vital. ''We had to evolve the brand and make hay. We have to pitch the next one very carefully,'' he says. Jaguar sources confirmed the sports car will be built in aluminium, most likely with the engine in the front, and the powerplants are ex- pected to be V6 and V8s running on petrol. Hodgkinson says Jaguar should double its sales this year from 52,000 in 2009 and promises the company will not repeat the mistake it made with the baby X-Type, which was just a re-bodied Ford Mondeo. ''In the past we've been schizo- phrenic. We've got to get rid of the old man's car image at Jaguar. ''We've got to get a car that a 25 year old has just got to have --- even if they cannot afford it. ''We want to develop and evolve sports cars and more sporty sedans, and driver's cars. We want a sports car.''
March 13th 2010
March 27th 2010