Jaguar planning to offer a track edition of the XKR-S Coupe

Article by Christian Andrei, on February 20, 2012

Jaguar may soon release a handful of special-edition XKR-S coupes that would surely be highly coveted. Jaguar is set to produce 100 of its non-special-edition super coupes each year for the next three years. According to Frank Klaas, Jaguar’s global head of communications, the XKR-S is an “ambassador of the brand.”

He said that the proposed special-edition model is targeted at the guy who seeks to “drive to the track, lap or race to his heart’s content, and drive home.” The car could get rid of its rear seats and be equipped with lighter stereo as well as HVAC units for the touch-screen-based systems, hard-core racing seats, a fire-suppression system, unique gauges, and track-focused aero addenda.

It’s possible that a roll cage is part of the package but it depends on the market where the car is being offered. Just like the standard XKR-S, this variant (which may be named after the Nürburgring) would be built by Jaguar’s in-house Engineered To Order (ETO) group. The Nürburgring is where production-grade XKR-S models have supposedly achieved sub-eight-minute lap times.

Klaas asserts that the ETO team, which is silently fulfilling requests for bespoke cars for high-value customers, will have a more major role in the future for Jaguar marketing. It’s not certain if the special-edition coupes would be added to the annual 100-car XKR-S allotment.

However, Klaas said that a harder-core version of the convertible isn’t one of those being considered at this juncture. It’s likely that Jaguar will test interest by presenting a vehicle at the upcoming Geneva Auto Show or at this fall’s Paris Auto Show.

The Jaguar XKR-S – a much-improved higher-performance version of the Jaguar XK that won several global accolades for its stylish looks – takes the styling seen on the XK to a higher level. For example, the new XKR-S sports new slimmer LED headlights and a more compact main air intake on the front, vertical power vent on the side, and the Jaguar 'Leaper' mounted in the center of the bootlid on the rear.

As expected, the Jaguar XKR-S is a high-speed machine, with the ability to reach up to 300 km/h of top speed. However, as the XKR-S reaches the top speed, there is a need to promptly guide airflow around and under the sports car to ensure balanced downforce both on the front and on the rear and to make sure that the XKR-S remains very stable even at high speeds.

With these in mind, Jaguar modified its aerodynamic elements, resulting to a 26-percent reduction in aerodynamic lift – making the XKR-S a high-speed yet agile and stable machine.

Jaguar employed Computational Fluid Dynamics to make the necessary modifications, and confirm its results through wind tunnel testing. These modifications include radical revisions on the front end of the car, making its look more imposing on the road. For instance, it sports a new bumper design with near vertical feature lines flowing from the edges of the oval air intake.

These lines also support the car’s new carbon-fiber splitter and lower spoiler. Vertical slots can also be found on the outer edges of the front fenders, guiding air through the sides along the wider sills to give the new XKR-S a higher level of high-speed directional stability. A separate rear wing – a carbon fiber center section -- was also mounted on the new XKR-S, this time to ensure that front and rear lifts are balanced. This rear wing works in consonance with a Venturi structure mounted underneath the rear bumper of the new XKR-S.

The new XKR-S is available in any of the five exterior colors, including Italian Racing Red and French Racing Blue. Its exterior trim is finished in gloss black. This new car rides on 20-inch Vulcan lightweight forged alloy wheels with a dark technical finish with brake calipers – with emblazoned 'Jaguar' -- in either red or gunmetal.

Topics: jaguar, jaguar xkr, coupe

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