Jaguar is apparently considering bringing the XK out of retirement. Discontinued for the 2015 model year, the automaker didn’t see much reason to keep it around with the F-Type being such a success.
Hanno Kirner, Jaguar Land Rover’s director of corporate strategy, now claims the time has come to commence work on a 2+2 F-Type. However, the brand wants to further re-establish itself as a sports car manufacturer. The F-Type was a good start, and the spiritual successor to the XK will further that goal. But Kirner, along with design head Ian Callum, wants to see a whole family of new sporting vehicles populating Jaguar’s stable within the next decade.
“The F-Type has been a huge success,” Kirner told Autocar in a recent interview. “We love sports cars — and I use the plural quite deliberately. Whether that is delivered by a body variant or something else remains to be seen, but for now let’s just say that the body type is very important for us … I want a two-seater and a 2+2. We’re working on something now. There’s nothing approved, but we instigate in design.”
Jaguar was believed to had been working on the design of a third-generation XK before the model was discontinued. However, that isn’t going to quicken the four-seater’s development phase. The new model is supposedly an entirely new design and unlikely to see the light of day before 2021. Jag’s new sports car family is also supposed to ride on a new platform — not the modified (shortened) XK architecture the F-Type currently uses.
That’s good news, as we can’t imagine the current model becoming a 2+2 without convulsing from fits of laughter. But you don’t want to turn the F-Type into a pig so you can sell it with more seats, either. Apparently, the new platform will be flexible enough to size up or down without much trouble and could even take a wide variety of powertrains.
“There is an argument that says hybrid sports cars might cater for both the environment and the excitement such cars deliver,” Kirner said. “A lot of people like the sound of an engine. That’s a fact, and it is a defining part of a sports car. I absolutely believe that there will be electric sports cars one day, but I also believe there may be a different step of combining the battery and an engine. At Jaguar, all I can say for now is that we will continue to invest in sports cars.”
[Image: Jaguar Land Rover]