Jaguar is preparing a new range of flagships to take the fight to Audi, BMW and Mercedes all over again. Here’s a preview of the brand new full-size ‘J-Pace’ SUV and all-new XJ sedan.
England is preparing for an all-out assault. As their flagship SUV, Jaguar is readying the J-Pace (which is what we think it’ll be called) to sit above the E-Pace and F-Pace – not to forget the all-electric I-Pace, of course.
Jaguar seems to have ambitious goals. In a couple of years, the company is planning the launch of two sturdy reinforcements in the top-end luxury segment – a super SUV, and the next-gen of the XJ sedan. Both spearheads can be seen in our renderings here. The effect, we must admit, is noteworthy – two flagships, quite distinct from each other, brought together by exclusivity and their ambitious goals.
The turning point for Jaguar came two years ago in the shape of the F-Pace. This allowed the British car manufacturer to enter, for the very first time, one of the hottest segments in the market – controlled by champions like the Audi Q5, BMW X3 and Mercedes GLC. And that’s not all – in a very short span of time, the F-Pace became the company’s best-selling model.
Following the success of the F-Pace, Jaguar has expanded its high-riding portfolio. The brand introduced the E-Pace in the second half of 2017, and this year the unprecedented battery powered I-Pace. But Jaguar has yet to conquer the Mount Olympus of all automobile segments – a segment that includes the most luxurious and coveted of SUVs, a niche segment where there’s no Jaguar. And that’s where the J-Pace comes in. At this point, besides the Maserati Levante, the J-Pace will compete against the Audi Q7, BMW X5, Mercedes GLE and Porsche Cayenne.
With its fourth SUV, which is still a couple of years away, the focus is moving towards SUVs – demand for which just doesn’t seem to slowdown. This focus isn’t exactly a novel one in the industry though, as the German luxury triumvirate have been bolstering their SUV portfolios for several years now. Of course, electrification is another focus area – and the Jaguar I-Pace nicely blends these two.
The J-Pace, as per these Quattroruote renderings, will be athletic and aggressive – much like the E-Pace, but a lot larger of course. One thing’s for certain, this super sport utility vehicle must be immediately recognisable as a Jaguar. And for that it needs to have remarkable dimensions, at least four meters and ninety centimetres in length. It’s easy, therefore, to imagine the presence of a generous interior, which can easily accommodate five or even seven passengers without compromising on their comfort. A third row of seats will lead to a large overhang at the back. The architecture, and a lot of the mechanics, will possibly be borrowed from its cousin, the Range Rover. Certainly, an aluminium chassis and body will be required to keep weight low and ensure good dynamics. Compared to the Range Rover, the J-Pace will be lower and its road performance prioritised. There will likely be some supercharged V6 and V8 petrol engines, and even a hybrid plug-in variant featuring a petrol four-cylinder engine.
Don’t forget the flagship sedan
Even though SUVs are undeniably essential for a manufacturer, it’s equally important to have a flagship sedan. After all, in the brand’s history, both two-seat cars (coupés and convertibles), and high performance sedans, have played a leading role – as the XJ has demonstrated for almost half-a-century now.
So, all said and done, luxury sedans will continue to hold their place in the model line-ups of these leading brands. The XJ will come early in 2019, and it’ll likely be even larger than the current model – in order to provide even more space for the rear seat passengers. That said, its sporting soul will be preserved. After all, the XJ has always been known as one of the sportiest flagship sedans around – the ride of choice for the well-heeled hooligan! But, there’s also the possibility that this super sedan could surprise us with an all-electric drivetrain as well – which would put it in the unique position of once again taking on Tesla head on.
Jaguar has already taken the lead in the EV stakes against its German rivals with the I-Pace, and it wouldn’t be too surprising to see them doing it again with the new XJ as well. All said and done, both these flagships from the leaping cat – the SUV and the sedan – will be highly anticipated.
Tall, muscular and authoritative – this is how we envision the J-Pace, Jaguar’s flagship SUV, will look. Main target markets? Probably the Chinese and North-American markets, but it will come to India too of course. Featuring such a wide tail window (above), it’s probable that it’ll also come in a seven seat version.
Will JLR stay in England?
Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) is looking towards the future with new models, but it’s also evaluating the possible impact of Brexit on its English production. In this regard, CEO Ralf Speth (right) declared, ‘the heart and soul of JLR are in the United Kingdom. However, there’s a possibility of an unpredictable future if Brexit negotiations don’t keep trade with the European Union free.’ The group imports more than 40% of its components from the EU. So you see why it’s important. He further added, ‘We need greater certainty to keep investing in the United Kingdom and to protect our suppliers, customers and the 40,000 employees who operate within the country.’ He also said, ‘A bad agreement could cost JLR a loss of more than 1.2 billion pounds every year.’ These words clearly demonstrate a not-so-concealed effort to warn the Conservative Government led by Theresa May. Meanwhile, the group seems to be in the process of transferring much of the Land Rover Discovery production to its Slovak plant, which boasts untapped industrial capacity.
One of the most important features of the future XJ could be a fully electric drivetrain. Moreover, it’s possible that it’ll grow further in length, becoming even more comfortable than the current version – bear in mind that the standard wheelbase already measures 5.13 meters.
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