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Old 07-18-2006, 14:27   #1 (permalink)
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UK:Jaguar Lets New XKR Loose on Home Turf

Jaguar Lets New XKR Loose on Home Turf

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(Photo courtesy of Jaguar Cars North America)


(Photo courtesy of Jaguar Cars North America)
This 420-hp version of Jaguar's new XK should help solidify its credentials as a serious performance car.

LONDON — Jaguar has unveiled the supercharged XKR at the British International Motor Show in London. The high-performance flagship of the recently launched XK-Series range, the XKR features a supercharged 4.2-liter V8 that develops 420 horsepower.

The XKR seeks to combine the grand touring aspirations of a traditional Jaguar with an added dose of sporting prowess. The handsome XK styling has been given an aggressive makeover with the introduction of redesigned bumpers, aluminum-finish grilles and side air vents. Pronounced hood louvers — a signature feature of the previous-generation XKR — are retained and there's a choice of either 19- or 20-inch alloy wheels.

The 4.2-liter engine is a development of that found in the previous-generation XKR. It produces 420 hp and 413 pound-feet of torque, which is enough to propel the Jag from zero to 60 mph in 4.9 seconds and on to an electronically limited 155 mph according to Jaguar. Uprated springs and dampers, coupled with a recalibration of Jaguar's Computer Active Technology Suspension (CATS) system, further differentiate the XKR from the standard XK.

Inside, an aluminum fascia is standard, but this can be swapped for the usual collection of wood trims. XKR sports seats are standard and a generous specification includes Keyless start and Active Front Lighting.

Both convertible and hardtop versions of the XKR will be available in the U.S. starting next spring. Prices will be announced nearer to the on-sale date, but in the U.K., the XKR costs £7,500 ($13,702)more than the existing £59,995 ($109,611) XK.

Jaguar Managing Director Bibiana Boerio claimed that the company has already taken 4,000 orders for the new car, before it has been seen in public.

What this means to you: It already had the looks. Now the XK has the power to challenge its German rivals.
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