Jaguar F-Type: confirmed

Jaguar has finally confirmed that the long-awaited F-Type will make production. The announcement has been made at the New York show, where Jaguar Global Brand Director Adrian Hallmark confirmed that the car previously known as C-X16 will, come the autumn, be shown in final production form and named the F-Type with sales to start next year.

C-X16 loses roof, gains F-Type name
C-X16 loses roof, gains F-Type name
About bloody time too!

Rumours of a sportier, Porsche-rivalling Jaguar have been doing the rounds for years - since the late 80s in fact. That project was an ill-fated successor to the XJ-S and, since then there have perioducally been concept cars and rumours reviving the idea of a small sports car, invariably dubbed 'F-Type' by someone. Almost exactly 10 years ago we ran a story saying 'F-Type delayed' and, while most times it's nice to be proved right, nobody could have predicted that delay would stretch to a decade!

The F-Type label of course carries huge emotional baggage for Jaguar - cue the 'spiritual successor to the E-Type' headlines - and Jaguar accepts that this is "a market segment that we have been absent from for too long." Hallmark says "the core appeal of Jaguar's cars is their sporting heart and that heart will beat stronger than ever before in the F-Type."

Test programme now shifts to the road
Test programme now shifts to the road
A more measured view - he's been taking his time over it after all - can be found from design boss Ian Callum, who's mused several times over the years on what the F-Type should be. Discussing the C-X16 concept on PH last year, Callum recognised that the car would need a harder sporting edge. Later in the year PH joined Callum for a talk where he acknowledged that the E-Type's legacy was "a cloud over his head" but hinted that light weight and agility were, perhaps, of greater relevance for future Jaguar sports cars than outright top speedbragging rights.

Hard facts? Limited so far, but the pre-show release boasts that the F-Type will launch not as a C-X16 style coupe but as a convertible "utilising Jaguar's industry leading knowledge of all-aluminium construction." It goes on to say, "A range of petrol engines will be available - including a new powerplant family - and all will deliver stunning sports car performance."

Compact size and low weight promised
Compact size and low weight promised
So will it get the full-monty, KERS-enhanced 475hp promised when the C-X16concept was first shown last year? To be confirmed, but the heart of the F-Type is more likely to be rather more conventional and based on a V6 version of Jaguar's AJ-V8, possibly supercharged to 380hp if it makes good on Jaguar's promises for the petrol-powered half of the C-X16's hybrid powertrain.

According to the release, the F-Type's development schedule has now moved to on-road testing so if you live anywhere near Jaguar's Castle Bromwich plant where the car will eventually be built expect to see stickered-up prototypes like the one in the pictures in your area soon.

Full technical details will be released later in the year and, after keeping us waiting more than long enough, now we really can't wait!

Related C_X16 and F-Type stories...
LA show: Jaguar and Land Rover
Jaguar and the future of fast cars
Pic of the Week: Jaguar C-X16
New Jaguar C-X16 concept gets 'KERS'
Jaguar's triple sports car treat
F-Type delayed
Jaguar plans new sports car concept for the Paris show


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Comments (185) Join the discussion on the forum

  • Twincam16 10 Apr 2012

    mph said:
    drcarrera said:
    It had better be available with a manual box!

    If all they offer is a torque-converter slush box then Porsche won't need to worry about losing any Boxster/Cayman/911 sales (and Aston, Audi, BMW etc will sleep easy as well).
    It would just take a few sales from middle aged female Merc SLK buyers ... wink
    Automatics are becoming more popular than manuals these days, even in sports cars.

    I think it will take a lot of sales from Porsche, Audi, BMW and Mercedes. I certainly hope so.
    Well, it's not quite as clear-cut as that. Gearboxes are sprouting too many gears to physically fit into a traditional H-gate, and most of the proper sports cars in the ranges you've cited above have DSG paddleshift gearboxes.

    Jaguar's auto 'box is good, but IMO for this car to credibly hold its own against the top-end BMW Z4s, it needs a proper DSG, specifically one that shifts down the instant you want it to rather than being overridden by a nanny-knows-best computer.

  • Ftumpch 10 Apr 2012

    Excellent timing! It's spot-on for being released to celebrate the 10 year anniversary of the demise of the Maserati 4200 Spyder, for which Jaguar has obviously quietly acquired the tooling.

  • Raitzi 08 Apr 2012

    Sound is amazing. Very close to original straight six from V6.

  • handbraketurn 07 Apr 2012

    Watch this:

    It sounds awesome, like a cross between a Nissan GT-R and clasic jag.

    I REALLY hope they keep the design as close to the C-x16 as possible, because its amazing and I'd buy one tomorrow.

    I've read that they are going for the drop top first for various engineering and launch-timing issues, and the coupe will follow. Given its suppose to be a drivers car, would have thought they should do it the other way around.

    The Jag teaser video is pretty nice too, turn your speakers up.

  • once 07 Apr 2012

    FNG said:
    One very good reason for it is that the car will be made with early off-tool parts, so fit and finish won't be to production standards.

    The last thing any manufacturer wants is early pics of a new model displaying anything other than perfect panel profiles, shutlines etc etc.

    I would expect some parts not to be off-tool yet either, and that'd be very obvious without a wrap over the top.

    Camouflage at the very least indicates it's an early build car, if not a full-blown prototype, and probably hides a few minor sins too.

    These cars need to be used on the road to complete their testing, and now many people have a quality camera and internet connection on their phone, the risk of washing your dirty linen in public is just too great.

    Lastly the car's probably a year from production. There will be a carefully planned unveiling later this year I expect. The general public's reaction to the launch would be underwhelming at best if they already think they saw the finished product 6 months earlier.
    Well said - agree with all of that. They could also be testing different bodystyles and panels so that what you see now isn't what you'll be buying when it's on sale.

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