Honestly, we wouldn't object.
Take a look at your calendar and it’s hard to believe the Jaguar F-Type will be six years old this year. Typically, automakers launch a model redesign every five to seven years, give or take, so the clock is definitely ticking for a new F-Type. Question is, will it be a direct continuation of today’s car with a front-engined setup and V8 power, a hybrid, or something else entirely?
Road and Track caught up with Jaguar design chief Ian Callum at Paris last week and pushed him for an answer regarding this very subject. First off, Callum did not deny that a new F-Type is in the works, so that’s already a good sign. He also didn’t specifically say whether or not the name ‘F-Type’ will continue. How does ‘G-Type’ sound to you? Honestly, we’re not entirely sold on it, at least not yet.
Anyway, what Callum did have to say was quite interesting, specifically regarding its rumored hybrid setup. “This (a hybrid) is not necessarily the plan. There’s not a plan, to be honest with you. But we went through a great big debate about it. The all-new F-Type, what it should be, and so on. I would like to do a mid-engine-style electric car, I think that would be the ultimate for me. Like a C-X75 (the concept car shown at the top of this page). You know, mid-cabin, mid-engined proportions, but electric. I think that would be a phenomenal car. And it’s in my head, and you know, probably a few scribbles here and there. But we haven’t committed to that, and we may not do that in time for me the see that through, unfortunately.”
Obviously, this is very good news for fans of the never built C-X75 hybrid-electric concept, which first premiered in 2010. It later returned in 2015 for an appearance in the James Bond flick “Spectre”. If the F-Type’s successor were to be an all-electric coupe and convertible with mid-engine proportions then, to be honest, we’d be thrilled.
Remember, Jaguar now has experience with EV tech thanks to the I-Pace. Could the I-Pace’s platform be modified, in this case, shortened, for a sports car? From what we’ve heard this would be technically possible. And speaking of new Jaguars, what about an XJ replacement? The current flagship sedan arrived way back in 2009 and though it still looks great today, Callum not only re-confirmed a redesign is coming but also that it’ll represent “a step forward.” But in what way?
Well, for starters, size. Callum pointed out that despite a slowdown in sales, the XJ remains the most fun to drive in its segment. Above all, he doesn’t think consumers will completely ditch sedans in favor of crossovers. “People are fickle,” he said. “I think there may be a risk that people will grow up with SUVs, but there will be a generation beyond millennials that will not want SUVs. I think they will want sedans again. I think it might move back, and so we have to be prepared.” Callum didn’t offer up any next-gen XJ specifics, but a rumor not long ago pegged it as an all-electric Tesla fighter.
That would make sense given Callum’s “step forward” claim and, once again, the I-Pace’s platform. We don’t have exact dates as to when the new F-Type and XJ will appear, but it’s a good bet the sedan will arrive first. Regardless of powertrain, when it comes to design Jaguar is an undisputed industry leader, thanks to the one and only Ian Callum.