Blame people in Toorak and Chelsea for this.
The surge in popularity of posh, plush SUVs is one of the major contributing factors for Jaguar abandoning the idea of a V8-powered XE compact saloon, or so reports suggest. A senior fellow from Jaguar-Land Rover’s ‘Special Vehicles Operation’ (SVO) has confirmed that we shouldn’t hold our breath for an eight-cylinder XE, while speculation has connected the dots with regards to the XE SVR’s cause of death.
Senior programs manager Duncan Smith, of SVO, spoke to American publication Car & Driver on the matter, and shot down the idea of a V8 XE. The closest as we’ll ever get to such a thing is the Jaguar XE SV Project 8, which Smith described as “the extreme embodiment of what the XE could do.”
But with just 300 to be made and none of them right-hand drive, anyone with an appetite for a V8-powered British super-saloon will have to look elsewhere.
Smith went on to talk about the sales success of the Range Rover Sport SVR, which features that same 404kW supercharged V8 mill as everything else with an SVR badge, which alluded to the fact that the recently-announced F-Pace SVR (that comfortably undercuts the Range Rover Sport SVR) and its expected sales successes had something to do with the shelving of a possible XE SVR.
Still though, we can only hope that the same fate won’t befall the bigger XF, one of the hidden gems in the mid-size luxury saloon segment, where an SVR version would easily make something like a BMW M5 or Mercedes-AMG E63 sweat.