The first model from the “reimagined” Jaguar brand – now targeting Bentley with more luxurious cars, higher prices and electric power only – is a four-door ‘GT’ car.
The relaunch of British luxury-car maker Jaguar will begin with a four-door electric car with Tesla-like driving range, Porsche performance and a price tag in excess of $200,000.
As first confirmed two years ago, Jaguar plans to go electric in 2025 with a new range of lower-volume, super-luxury cars now targeted at the likes of Bentley and Porsche – after years of declining sales in an attempt to beat BMW, Audi and Mercedes-Benz.
It means the plug will be pulled on the brand’s current range of sports cars, sedans and SUVs within the next 18 months to make way for three new models, built in its Solihull, UK factory on new underpinnings known as JEA.
Jaguar has announced its first new electric model will be a “four-door GT”, which if previous reports are a guide, may be a blend of a traditional station wagon and SUV, akin to a Kia EV6, or to a lesser extent, a Porsche Taycan Cross Turismo off-road wagon.
It remains to be seen if the new vehicles come to Australia, as they will initially be sold only in “selected markets” – and the company delivered just 700 cars here last year, down 42 per cent on 2021 results.
The vehicle is claimed to offer up to 700 kilometres of driving range, more power than any previous Jaguar – beating the current 441kW record held by the XE SV Project 8 sedan – and “indicative pricing” from £100,000 ($AU185,000).
This is a similar price to a top-of-the-range Jaguar F-Type coupe, the supercharged V8 R 75, which is priced from £103,075 in the UK, or $284,550 plus on-road costs.
It is similarly priced to a mid-range Porsche Taycan electric sedan – likely to become one of the Jaguar’s main rivals – which in 4S Cross Turismo trim costs £91,700 in the UK, or $208,000 plus on-road costs in Australia.
Details of the other two new electric Jaguars are yet to be confirmed, and it’s unclear how long after the first model – due to open for orders “in selected markets” next year, ahead of “client” deliveries in 2025 – they are due.
A report from the UK’s Autocar last year claimed the launch four-door model may be joined by a two-door version – with a choice of rear- or all-wheel drive – alongside a larger SUV aimed at the US and China, with standard all-wheel drive and more interior space.
Jaguar executives claim the design of the new four-door – and the models to follow – will be a “copy of nothing”, referencing a quote from Jaguar founder Sir William Lyons.
“The E-Type in its time looked like it had dropped from space. The XJS was equally compelling and a copy of nothing. It started again and didn’t copy the E-Type,” Jaguar Land Rover chief creative officer Gerry McGovern said, as quoted by Autocar.
“The designs of current Jaguars aren’t bad; the strategy was more one of universal appeal and chasing more mainstream premium, which made the cars more normal. We want to go back [to the old philosophy]. It’s a complete reimagining.”
Mr McGovern said 18 full-size concepts of potential designs for the new electric Jaguars were created by three design teams – but the decision to choose the three final designs was “unanimous”.
A teaser image of the new electric Jaguar (above) was reportedly shown to UK media alongside the latest announcement, though it gives little away about the car’s styling.
Jaguar is said to be targeting about 50,000 sales per year for its new range – down from 61,000 sales of its current models last year, though the new vehicles will be sold at higher prices, each generating more profit per car.
Alongside Jaguar’s switch to electric power, the Land Rover and Range Rover brands – including the Defender and Discovery nameplates – are set to roll out a range of battery-powered vehicles of their own.
An electric version of the new full-size Range Rover is due to open for pre-orders later this year, ahead of first showroom arrivals expected next year.
Jaguar Land Rover has confirmed plans to introduce a new electric “medium-size” SUV “from the Range Rover family” – expected to be the next Range Rover Evoque – in 2025.
It will be underpinned by a new architecture known as EMA, which will now be offered with electric power only – scrapping previous plans for the option of a ‘range-extender’ hybrid model.
This architecture is expected to be used for the next-generation Land Rover Discovery Sport, which is also due closer to the middle of this decade.
Land Rover has previously announced plans for six electric vehicles arriving from 2024, before axing diesel power in 2026, and going electric-only from 2036.