Jaguar is about to approve a lineup of compact and lightweight rear-drive models that will lead a major sales expansion for the brand. Senior sources claim that this new line won’t be rivalling the already popular premium cars like the BMW 3-series and Audi A4. Rather, it will seek to do better than these German competitors when it comes to lightweight aluminium construction and advanced, very economic four-cylinder engines. The worldwide market for compact premium cars of all body styles is on track to reach 2 million units a year. Jaguar officials have made a decision to generate significant volume by competing in this still-expanding segment. With sales of fewer than 60,000 units, the British automaker is far from having the goods to dominate in this segment.
It would first have to double its output in the medium term to secure its future together with sister company Land Rover. The junior model range will be based on a new series of components that could be scaled in order to be used for the next-gen XF and XJ models. Adrian Hallmark, Jaguar’s global brand director, said that this will enable the company to later build 90% of the volume from one common components set.
By using the same highly scaleable Premium Lightweight Architecture (PLA) aluminium platform on all three model ranges, Jaguar will be able to drive into sustainable profitability by operating its Castle Bromwich plant at full capacity. This platform was used first on the Mk4 Range Rover. Hallmark said that even if many expect the new small Jaguar to go up against the 3-series, the company won’t take that route. He explained that all the cars in that segment are “good” with a remarkable combination of efficiency, performance, and equipment. He also said that there are other “gigs in town.”