Jaguar officially debuted its next-generation sports car at the 2012 Paris Motor Show. The all-new F-TYPE, launching in three forms that include F-TYPE, F-TYPE S, AND F-TYPE V8 S, introduces a new sports car design language for the marque and features bold, clean lines accentuated with blending of technology, deployable rear spoiler, and hidden door handles.
“Jaguar is a founding member of the sports car segment with a rich sporting bloodline stretching over 75 years,” said Adrian Hallmark, Global Brand Director, Jaguar.” In the F-TYPE we’ve reignited that flame. The F-TYPE isn’t designed to be like anyone else’s sports car. It’s a Jaguar sports car – ultra-precise, powerful, sensual, and, most of all, it feels alive.”
The new Jaguar F-TYPE represents a return to the company’s heart: a two-seat, convertible sports car focused on performance, agility and driver involvement. The F-TYPE is a continuation of a sporting bloodline that stretches back more than 75 years and encompasses some of the most beautiful, thrilling and desirable sports cars ever built. Joining the XK convertible and coupe models, the new F-TYPE provides Jaguar with a broader line of sports and GT models.
New F-TYPE models will be powered by a trio of engines previously announced as the new Jaguar supercharged 3.0-liter V-6 engine in 340hp and 380hp outputs and a 495hp 5.0-liter supercharged V-8.
All new engines will backed by Jaguar’s 8-speed Quickshift automatic gearbox with the final drive ratio of the V-6 S models arriving slightly lower than the standard V-6 model. Another highlight of the Quickshift technology is that once the transmission has shifted into second gear, a locking clutch bypasses the torque convertor thereby creating a direct mechanical link between engine and rear wheels via limited-slip rear differentials.
“Fundamentally, a great sports car is one you’ll look forward to driving because it’s fun, and the F-TYPE definitely delivers on that score,” said Mike Cross, Chief Engineer, Vehicle Integrity, Jaguar. “We’ve worked hard to make sure that responses to steering, throttle, and brakes are absolutely immediate, a task made far easier by the rigid aluminum structure at the car’s base. It’s precise and exciting, a car that you’ll want to drive for the sake of driving alone – and it sounds fantastic.”
An asymmetric cabin layout demonstrates a focus placed sharply on the driver, an environment Jaguar intended to envelop and engage the pilot.
According to Ian Callum, Director of Design, Jaguar, “We wanted the experience of sitting in the F-TYPE to be exciting. A sports car cockpit should be an intimate place and so we aimed to get a sense of the surfaces falling towards and then wrapping around the driver. What we’ve done is given it the essence and spirit of doing what you want to do rather than what’s expected of you. The more processed this world becomes, the more important that is.”
The small, three-spoke steering wheel will be available in a flat-bottom design and numerals on the tach are larger and bolder than those found on the speedo in order to enhance visibility when shifting the vehicle manually via the steering wheel-mounted gearshift paddles.
The F-TYPE arrives with sport bucket seats but owners can opt for additional support with the Performance seats that feature additional side bolstering and all seats are available with full power function should drivers place a higher priority on convenience over weight reduction.
The new convertible sports cars should arrive in the U.S. market in summer 2013 and pricing has just been released. The “base” F-TYPE will start from $69,000, the F-TYPE S begins at $81,000, and the top-of-the-line F-TYPE V8 S is priced from $92,000, all MSRP USD.
By the numbers, the F-TYPE should arrive at 60 mph in 5.1 seconds, the S in 4.8 seconds, and the F-TYPE V8 S will go 0-60 in 4.2 seconds and feature a top track speed of 186 mph. For those interested, the power soft top can fold in a mere 12 seconds at speeds up to 30 mph.