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Jaguar Announces It's Back In The Supercar Business With Its C-X75

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On: Sat, May 7, 2011 at 11:34AM | By: Andrew W Davis

Jaguar Announces It's Back In The Supercar Business With Its C-X75

Remember the XJ 220? Jaguar would probably prefer that you didn't. It's not that is was a bad car per se, it's just that so many compromises were made during its for-production development that the original car-show darling, which attracted more blank-check buyers than could be accommodated in 1989, was turned into a road car; people actually sued Jaguar to get out of buying once they saw the production version in late 1991.

Chief culprit was the switch from the concept's big V12 engine and all-wheel drive to a turbo V6 and rear-drive. Granted, what buyers that went through with their purchases got in 1992 was still a high-performance machine—it still set closed-course speed records in excess of the 220 mph its name implied—but the fact that many still lingered unsold in 1997 shows that when you promise a supercar full of superlatives, you better deliver (without spiking the MSRP after delivering half the promised cylinders).

[Boy, if all those who were adamant that a flagship Jaguar had to have a V12 were freaked-out by a V6, reading the specs of the 2013 C-X75 will probably make their heads explode….]

Given the painful lessons learned from the XJ 220 debacle, it stood to reason that when Jaguar unveiled the plug-in hybrid/turbine/spaceship C-X75 at the 2010 Paris Motor Show, most people assumed that it was Jaguar’s 75th birthday present to itself and nothing more would come of it.

After all, the car maker learned the hard way that if they used the “P” word—as in “production”—to describe a vehicle like the C-X75 that they’d have to actually build the thing, including all of its whiz-bang technology.

So color me surprised when Jaguar releases a statement that says the “high-performance hybrid supercar will stay true to the initial concept design study that made its debut in Paris while fulfilling requirements that allow it to be homologated for road use.”

Yes, you read that right: Jaguar’s building its show-stand supercar—250 of them, in fact—as nearly change-free as it could be.

So, in keeping with that spirit, I’ll let Jaguar give its own explanation “change-free”:

  • Jaguar to launch C-X75 as a hybrid supercar
  • Mixes internal combustion power with electric motors to achieve supercar performance and less than 99g/km CO2 emissions
  • Downsized highly boosted petrol engine with two powerful electric motors and four-wheel-drive

· 0-60 mph in less than 3 seconds

· 0-100 mph in less than 6 seconds

· Top speed in excess of 200mph

  • All-electric running range in excess of 50km
  • True-to-concept, lightweight, all carbon-fiber chassis
  • Groundbreaking association with Williams F1 – built in the UK
  • Direct technology transfer from top-level motorsport
  • Prices from 700,000 depending on local market and taxes
  • Exclusive limited volume hybrid supercar – only 250 will be built

“Jaguar C-X75 will become the British marque’s most advanced model to date. It will offer performance on a par with the fastest production cars on the market, while adopting cutting-edge technology that offers remarkably economical running. Jaguar expects this hybrid supercar to deliver incredibly low CO2 emissions of less than 99g/km while being able to achieve in excess of 200 mph.”

Like I said, only 250 will be built, each costing “between €700,000 - €900,000 depending on market and local taxes” (that’s between $1 million and $1.3 million pre-tax in this market).

Still interested? Hurry, because Jaguar started taking orders right after today’s production announcement. The company will be “taking expressions of interest via its website www.jaguar.com or via its dedicated C-X75 contact service on the following numbers: UK: 0800 015 8605; International: +44(0)1932 335370 or +44(0)1932 335365; and China: 400 820 8955.”

I wish you luck, and here’s to hoping the C-X75 you receive is as-promised. Ironically, this is probably the only instance in which Jaguar aficionados are hoping that their flagship car won’t have a V12…

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