JAGUAR MARKS 50 YEARS OF THE XJ SALOON WITH ITS ‘XJ50’ MODEL


Jaguar is marking 50 years of its flagship XJ luxury saloon – the choice of business leaders, celebrities, politicians and royalty for five decades – with the launch of a new special edition model. Revealed at the Beijing Motor Show, the Jaguar XJ50 celebrates half a century of trademark performance, technology and luxury.

Available in both standard and long wheelbase with a choice of 3.0-litre petrol (340PS) and diesel (300PS) powertrains, the exterior updates for the XJ50 include Autobiography-style front and rear bumpers. These mark the anniversary edition out alongside purposeful new 20-inch Venom wheels, a black front grille and unique badging to the rear and side vents, while the striking colour palette includes Fuji White, Santorini Black, Loire Blue and Rosello Red.

Inside, the luxurious cabin features soft-grain diamond-quilted seats with an embossed leaper on the headrests and an XJ50 logo on the centre armrest. Unique intaglio branding and XJ50-badged illuminated treadplates also differentiate the anniversary edition, alongside anodised gearshift paddles and bright metal pedals.

“Spanning half a century, the Jaguar XJ remains true to its heritage with a wonderful balance of beautiful design, intelligent performance and indulgent luxury that ensures it stands out from the crowd. This is a car worth celebrating and the XJ50 pays homage to a giant within the Jaguar brand that we believe is one of the world’s most stylish sporting saloons,” says Ian Callum, Jaguar Director of Design.

The XJ Series 1 started the distinctive dynasty in 1968 and for eight generations, the luxury saloon has been turning heads around the world. Whether transporting VIPs and politicians, or acting as the preferred vehicle for business leaders and royalty, the XJ has been a mainstay on our roads for five decades.

Innovating since its arrival, the XJ has epitomised the forward-thinking approach that has set Jaguar’s luxury saloon apart over the past 50 years. Four years into its life it became the world’s only mass-produced 12-cylinder four-door car and, with a top speed of 140mph (225km/h), it was also the fastest four-seater of its time.

Further models followed, sporting both standard and long wheelbases, as well as two and four-door body styles. The Series 2 was the first to offer a two-door coupé model in 1975 and the XJ40, in production for eight years from 1986, introduced the celebrated ‘J’ gate gear shifter and self-levelling suspension.

A revolutionary aluminium monocoque bodyshell helped reduce the XJ’s weight by 40 per cent from 2003, before the current XJ model brought additional technologies such as all-wheel drive and a virtual instrument cluster. With the introduction of Jaguar Design Director Ian Callum’s now iconic design language, it was also launched with a wraparound rear screen and distinctive cat claw inspired rear lights.

Constantly evolving while remaining one of the world’s truly great saloon cars, XJ has enjoyed a series of high-profile screen appearances. Starring roles in movies like Love Actually and The Long Good Friday, as well as the James Bond franchise, are proof of the XJ’s enduring cultural appeal.

The XJ50 is a fitting tribute to the enduring style and performance of Jaguar’s luxury saloon.

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PANASONIC JAGUAR TO RACE IN PARIS THIS WEEKEND

Panasonic Jaguar Racing are hoping to electrify the City of Lights as they prepare for the ABB FIA Formula E Paris E-Prix following a strong performances in recent races.

The British team’s momentum is growing with each race, and the inaugural Rome E-Prix was overall another positive weekend for Panasonic Jaguar Racing. Once again Mitch Evans secured valuable championship points after a hard-fought battle.

Mitch Evans and Nelson Piquet Jr now turn their attention to Paris and are hopeful the Jaguar I-TYPE 2’s proven pace and efficiency will help them on the Circuit Des Invalides. At 1.9km it’s the shortest track in the Championship and Panasonic Jaguar Racing are looking to be at the front of the grid throughout the weekend.   

James Barclay, Team Director Panasonic Jaguar Racing: “Every race we are moving in the right direction. Unfortunately, things didn’t quite go our way in Rome but we have taken a lot of positives and there are still improvements we can make. We are extremely happy with the progress both Mitch and Nelson have made, and we are now competing for podiums, not just points. We have been close on a number of occasions and I’m sure our time will come.”

Mitch Evans, #20: “We were so close to standing on the podium in Rome. It’s fuelled my determination to come back fighting in Paris. My race car performed well in the last two races. I think we have a chance at a podium, but Formula E is so unpredictable and competitive as you saw in Rome, anything can happen. It would be amazing, but we will keep working and keep fighting.”

Nelson Piquet Jr, #3: “Luck hasn’t necessarily been on my side for the last two races. We are going to work hard over the next couple of weeks to make sure we don’t have the same problems we encountered in Rome and deliver a successful weekend in Paris. It’s a great track, it’s short and technical and I think that the Jaguar I-TYPE 2 will be well suited to this layout.”

Last week Panasonic Jaguar Racing undertook the second round of the Generation 2 testing in the new Jaguar I-TYPE 3 at the Circuit Calafat, Spain. Mitch Evans was in the seat of the new Jaguar race car as the team continue their development ahead of season five of the ABB FIA Formula E Championship. 

FanBoost opens for the eight E-Prix of the season at 17:00 BST on Monday 23 April and closes at 15:10 BST on Saturday 28 April.

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I-PACE RACER TO DEBUT IN BERLIN

The Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY racecar will make its global public debut on the streets of Berlin ahead of the ABB FIA Formula E-Prix, as Jaguar leads the charge in the future of battery electric vehicles.

Following the launch of the Jaguar I-PACE in March, Jaguar Racing will mark this historic moment for the new international production based electric vehicle race series with a demonstration lap of the Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY racecar on Saturday 19 May at the Tempelhof circuit. The display will take place during the Berlin E-Prix showcasing this exciting racecar to a global audience, and to promote the championship ahead of the season five launch later this year. The driver of the car in Berlin will be announced shortly.

James Barclay, Team Director Jaguar Racing, said: “We are excited to reveal the new Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY racecar in Berlin and demonstrate its dynamic capabilities for the first time. The team at Jaguar Racing and Special Vehicle Operations (SVO) are building the key foundations for the incredibly exciting championship and we are pleased with the progress of our test and development programme, which has included a successful tyre test with our partner Michelin.

“We are really happy with the way the championship is progressing, and we are attracting more interest from teams around the world who want to be involved in this pioneering championship. We would also like to welcome M-Sport, who bring a wealth of experience, expertise and professionalism to the team as technical operations partner for the eTROPHY.”

Jaguar Racing have carried out successful development tests alongside Jaguar Land Rover Special Vehicle Operations (SVO) in Warwickshire, UK, to engineer and refine the performance of the production-based racecars, which has included chassis set-up, powertrain performance, energy management and aerodynamics tuning.  The eTROPHY development car has also completed its first shakedown at Jaguar Land Rover’s test track in Gaydon, England and initial tyre tests with Championship Partner, Michelin in Ladoux, France.

Jaguar Racing have enlisted MS-RT, the race technology division of M-Sport, as technical operations partner for eTROPHY. They will provide on-track engineering and technical resource and deliver the ‘Arrive and Drive’ package for competitors. M-Sport are an experienced and respected automotive company and will become a valued partner to Jaguar Racing. In addition, current partner, Williams Advanced Engineering will support the eTROPHY series in various technical areas including vehicle control systems.

The eTROPHY racecars are based on the Jaguar I-PACE, and up to 20 eTROPHY racecars will line up on the grid in some of the world’s great cities including Hong Kong, Rome, Paris and New York from the start of the 2018/19 series of the ABB FIA Formula E Championship. The full race calendar will be revealed later this year. Further news on eTROPHY teams will be announced shortly.

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JAGUAR ANNOUNCES ‘LANDMARK EDITION’ XE

Jaguar has revealed a distinctive new special edition of its Jaguar XE sports saloon. The Landmark Edition features unique design enhancements and a carefully chosen specification to showcase the very best of the award-winning XE.

The Landmark Edition is based on the R-Sport with the addition of unique 18-inch alloy wheels that set the new model apart. The exterior features a Sport front bumper, body-coloured side sills and boot spoiler while the side window surrounds, door mirror caps, grille surround and side vents are all finished in Gloss Black alongside special Landmark badging on the side vents.

The new model is available in a choice of three bold colours – Yulong White, Firenze Red and Santorini Black – and joins the 2019 model year line-up.

Inside, the XE Landmark Edition also uses the R-Sport model with its luxurious leather upholstery as a starting point, while unique Landmark-branded treadplates identify the special edition model. Customers benefit from the most popular XE features, including satellite navigation, xenon headlights and front and rear parking sensors fitted as standard.

Jaguar Land Rover’s advanced Touch Pro system with 10-inch central touchscreen provides simple and intuitive control of the infotainment settings.

Customers will be able to choose from Jaguar’s advanced, British-built Ingenium petrol and diesel engines which deliver an exceptional combination of performance, refinement and efficiency.*

All petrol engines are now equipped with particulate filters to make them even cleaner.  The highly efficient, close-coupled filters are neatly integrated into the aftertreatment system and trap ultrafine particles as the exhaust gas passes through them. Under normal driving conditions, the trapped particles will be oxidised into CO2 and the filter regenerated whenever the driver lifts off the accelerator.

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30 YEARS AGO – JAGUAR WON LE MANS AND WE WERE THERE – THE INSIDE STORY NEXT EDITION

Difficult as it is to believe if you were fortunate enough to witness it, but it really is 30 years in June since Jaguar won Le Mans for the first time as a factory entry since 1955!  Of course, Ecurie Ecosse won in 56 and 57 in their own D-Types.

30 years ago our editor was in the pits at Le Mans with a full media and photographers pass, he went to the TWR factory to see the cars being prepared, and knew many of the hard working team members from Bathurst and Le Mans in 1987.

We can say without hesitation we have the best inside images and knowledge of that victory of any publication, and in our next edition we will tell and show you from the inside, and for the only time, how TWR and Jaguar won Le Mans in 1988 and re-established itself as a motoring icon.

There is much to tell about how it was done with the TWR effort broken up into a three car team run by the UK outfit, and a two car effort crewed and managed by its Daytona 24 Hour winning team from the US.

There was politics within the outfit which haven’t been disclosed before, and a very shaky last hour or more for the Jaguar XJR-9LM which won the race.

Not all the cars were new that season, and we will outline the background of each of those five cars.

Remember too that Jaguar was challenging the awesome might of Porsche, and also Mercedes-Benz via the Sauber outfit – so 1988 was even tougher than the previous four years when Jaguar reappeared at Le Mans managed by Group 44 then TWR in totally different types of sports racers.

The victory celebrations at the track have never been equalled, and our editor says he knows he will never witness anything as emotional again at a race event.

DO NOT MISS THIS EDITION – It is very special even if you are not a racing buff

It is about Jaguar and Jaguar’s very survival through to this day.

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