Jaguar has confirmed what has, perhaps, been one of the worst kept secrets: its new sports car will be called the F-type. The car, whose design has been overseen by Scot Ian Callum, will initially enter production next year as a two-seater soft-top convertible.
The new Jaguar will sit between the Porsche Cayman/Boxster and Porsche 911 in the sports car segment: Jaguar bosses believe this positioning will give it a standalone price point in which to work. A full production version of the F-type is expected to be unveiled in Paris in September.
Jaguar’s global brand director Adrian Hallmark made the announcement at the New York Motor Show today. To coincide with the confirmation, Jaguar also released these ‘spy’ pictures of the new car.
The F-type — which was originally previewed at last year’s Frankfurt Motor Show as the C-X16 concept — will be powered by an engine capable of hitting 60mph from standstill in under 5.0secs. It’ll also accelerate on to a max in excess of 180mph.
While Jaguar bosses admitted it had considered a variety of names for the new car — including XE and XS — it finally opted on F-type as a natural progression from the iconic E-type.
“It’s not the new E-type,” Hallmark explained, “as there’s no logical continuation between the two cars. The C, D and E-type names were used for Jaguar’s sports cars of the day and it’s the same now. Of course we took a long deep breath before using F-type as we understand the connotations, but it’s a credit to the future.”
And Callum, the Dumfries-born design director for Jaguar, was quick to state the F-type will stay true to the C-X16 concept, making production with limited changes.
“The design will be very similar,” Callum said today. “Most designers — myself included — have been guilty of making a concept car that looks good and then a production car that is a disappointment. We won’t do that again.”
But he did admit that one feature of the C-X16 which won’t make it onto the F-type is the side opening rear tailgate.
“I have to admit, that was a bit of fun and a nod to the E-type,” Callum continued. “We could engineer it, but practicality is more important.”
Jaguar bosses have taken the brave step to build the convertible first simply because it demands the biggest engineering challenge and investment. Twelve months later, the coupe will arrive, followed by a number of other variants, including a hybrid version.