- - Thursday, August 4, 2011

Simply put, XKR-S is the most extreme expression yet of Jaguar’s passion for building beautiful, fast cars. For the first time with a series production car, Jaguar gains entry to the exclusive ‘300kph club’ (186mph) thanks to the effortless performance of the supercharged 5.0-litre AJ-V8 engine. A revised fueling map means the direct-injection powerplant now produces 550hp and 502 lb/ft of torque. Extensive tuning has ensured that power delivery and performance are seamless, contributing to a 0-60mph time of 4.2 seconds. The active exhaust encourages and rewards the enthusiastic driver with dramatic, motorsport-inspired aural feedback.

The pinnacle of the XK range builds on experience gathered from the supercharged XKR and has been developed to extend the performance parameters of the car. This new sharper-edged character allows the enthusiastic driver to explore the limits of the car’s dynamics without losing the refinement for which Jaguar is famous. The structural rigidity of the lightweight aluminum platform allowed the suspension to be reworked with bespoke components for increased stiffness without a commensurate loss of refinement. A reworked aluminum front suspension knuckle and revised rear geometry are allied to stiffer springs and dampers, lightweight forged alloy wheels and recalibrated steering effort provide immediate response and produce a more connected and agile driving experience.

The performance of the XKR-S is reflected in both its interior and exterior styling, which feature exclusive new paint colors that reflect Jaguar’s racing heritage. As with competition Jaguar cars of the past, the exterior of the XKR-S adheres to the principle of form following function. In addition to the styling changes, the XKR-S was the subject of extensive Computational Fluid Dynamics development work in order for it to achieve 186mph. The resultant changes reduce front and rear lift and optimizes lateral aerodynamic stability.

The performance intent of the XKR-S is clear from the moment the driver enters the cabin thanks to new cosseting Performance seats with prominent shoulder bolsters for close support during hard cornering. The seats feature 16-way adjustment, with memory and heating functions. A new three-spoke steering wheel provides the perfect interface between car and driver.

Ian Callum, Design Director, Jaguar Cars, “The styling of this car isn’t about image, it’s about true performance. Like other iconic Jaguar cars before it, the styling has been driven by geometry and aerodynamics for genuine design purity.”

The first Jaguar designed entirely under the guidance of Design Director Ian Callum, the XK has received accolades worldwide for its arresting appearance. Now further styling changes keep the XKR-S at the forefront of modern sports car design. Slimmer LED headlights, more compact main air intake and vertical side power vent all contribute to a more purposeful frontend appearance. At the rear of the car, the famous Jaguar ‘Leaper’ now proudly takes its’ place in the center of the decklid.

The XKR-S also required aerodynamic modifications to achieve its 186mph top speed in the unruffled manner expected of a Jaguar. It has been designed solely with an eye for purity of line and singularity of purpose. As the XKR-S approaches its top speed, there is a requirement to channel air cleanly over, around and under the car in order to maintain stability and ensure balanced down force front and rear. An overall reduction in lift of 26 percent has been achieved.

The necessary revisions were made after extensive Computational Fluid Dynamics work, proven through wind tunnel testing and are unique to this flagship of the XK range. The most dramatic changes have been applied to the front of the car, radically altering its appearance and lending it a more assertive look. A new bumper design features near vertical feature lines running down from the edges of the oval air intake and supporting the new carbon-fiber splitter and lower spoiler. At the extreme edges of the front fenders, vertical slots channel air down the sides of the car and along the wider sills for increased high-speed directional stability.

In order to balance front and rear lift, the XKR-S features a separate rear wing, a first for the XK range. This addition, with its carbon-fiber center section, works in concert with the similarly constructed venturi effect structure underneath the rear bumper.

The assertive new appearance of the XKR-S is subtly highlighted by some carefully chosen details exclusive to this model. Exterior trim is finished in gloss black, complemented by 20-inch Vulcan lightweight forged alloys in a dark finish.

The XKR-S is available in five paint colors, two of which evoke Jaguar’s competition heritage: Italian Racing Red and French Racing Blue.

Like the lining of a bespoke suit, the finishing touch is provided by the brake calipers, available in either red or gunmetal and emblazoned with the ‘Jaguar’ name.

Russ Varney, Chief Program Engineer, XK, “With the XKR-S we have exploited the inherent capabilities of the aluminum architecture to its fullest extent to create a track-capable performance derivative, extending all cars’ attributes and, we expect, eliciting an irresistible ‘smile of satisfaction’ response from the driver.”

Astonishing engines have always formed the strongly beating heart of Jaguar’s road and race cars from the record-setting straight-six in the XK120 to the smooth V12 that made the XJ12 the fastest four-door in the world when it was launched.

The AJ-V8 joined this illustrious list from the moment the first one was fired into life but in the XKR-S it is presented in its most potent form to date. Now in its third iteration and with the addition of supercharging, the all-aluminum four-cam powerplant delivers not only extreme performance but also improved efficiency thanks to the technologies incorporated into it, including spray-guided direct injection (SGDI) and dual independent variable cam timing (DIVCT).

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