Jaguar’s next-generation F-Type – currently not slated to arrive until 2021 – may be designed as an all-electric vehicle, while a BMW-sourced V8 could also be on the cards.
Speaking with Autocar, Jaguar Land Rover’s head of design Ian Callum commented that the replacement for the six-year-old F-Type is still a few years away, as “being a specialist car, it will have a longer life than the mainstream models.”
The F-Type is certainly set to rage on, however, with Callum noting that “despite sports cars not being a great growth area, there will be a future for the F-Type.”
To keep the F-Type viable in the eyes of Jaguar’s owners, Tata Motors, and to fit in with the company’s considerations of transforming into an EV-only brand, a pure-electric drivetrain is a strong possibility for the second-generation model.
Additionally, an all-electric powertrain would provide Callum and his design team the scope to craft something as bold and beautiful as the original E-Type, while a battery pack mounted along the floor of the car would ensure an incredibly low centre of gravity to enhance handling and balance.
However, if Jaguar is to stick with petrol power, or to offer both petrol and electric options, word is that the company may look to source its next V8 engine – which is currently codenamed Project Jennifer – from BMW due to a global decline in V8 sales.
The twin-turbocharged 4.4-litre unit currently produced by BMW is capable of producing up to 460kW/750Nm in the M5 Competition, and if the F-Type is to use it, or a variation of it, it would mark the first time a BMW V8 had been used in a JLR car since BMW’s ownership of the Rover Group in the 1990s.
Irrespective of its method of propulsion, the next F-Type will be based upon an all-new aluminium-intensive platform that is set to make it lighter and more space efficient than the current model. Being lighter, it would also aid in offsetting the weight of heavy battery packs in an electric-powered version.
Furthermore, the new platform is claimed to be capable of basing a proposed 2+2 coupe model on that would serve as a much-desired replacement for the decommissioned XK, which was last produced in 2014.
The current F-Type is set to hang around for at least two more years until a replacement meets light, however, with the current range now bolstered by the addition of the Chequered Flag Coupe and Convertible models, released as a part of the celebration of the marque’s 70 year sports car history which has also seen Jaguar unveil a pair of drop-top F-Type rally cars.