If only more brands made this same commitment.
Look at every mainstream automaker's sales results and you'll notice one major consistency: SUV and crossover sales dominate sedans. Ford already decided to discontinue its sedans and other brands are making similar decisions. The fact is traditional sedan sales aren't what they once were and there's simply no way of knowing whether or not the segment will recover. But not all brands are giving up on sedans and Jaguar is one of them. Speaking to Motor Trend, Jaguar Land Rover North America CEO Joe Eberhardt provided a clear outlook regarding the luxury brand's sedan future.
"The future of sedans is a challenge for the entire industry," he said. "A lot of our competitors have said they will walk away from sedans. We have no intention to do that. The fact that we just launched a refreshed F-Type is proof that we still believe in sports cars, especially the Jaguar brand. And while the volume might not be what it once was, we still think that it's the heart and soul of our company."
Without question this is good news, especially since Jaguar sedan sales were down last year. Take the Jaguar XF, for example. A total of just 1,187 units were sold in 2019, a drop of 49 percent compared to the year prior. The BMW 3 Series-fighting Jaguar XE? It too experienced a sales decrease last year by 25 percent compared to 2018. The XJ flagship, despite its age, is still hanging in there, though it saw a 26 percent sales decline in 2019.
While Jaguar remains committed to this segment, Eberhardt made clear there are zero plans to add more new car models to the lineup.
And then there's the issue of future EVs. Remember, the next-generation XJ sedan, due later this year, has already been confirmed to be going all-electric. Will the next XE and XF follow suit? Put it like this: the automaker's Castle Bromwich facility, home to both sedans, is currently being re-tooled to build the new XJ. So either the next XE and XF go all-electric as well, or JLR opts to build them elsewhere. If we had to make a guess, it'd be the former.