Jaguar is building a limited run of the fastest production model XK sports coupe to date.
It says the XKR-S will accelerate to 100kph in a shade over five seconds and hit 280kph flat-out. It’s powered by the 4.2-litre supercharged V8 and is aimed at what Jaguar calls “the true Jaguar enthusiast.” The lightweight coupe is faster and more agile than the XKR, and shares that car’s aluminium body architecture. The quad cam V8 develops 420bhp and peak torque of a solid 560Nm. With recalibrated engine management, the XKR-S’s top speed is electronically limited to 174mph – 19mph (30kph) faster than the XKR. The additional performance is made accessible by improved aerodynamics (reduced drag and lift) and a unique suspension set-up. Sharing the XKR’s six-speed sequential automatic transmission, the XKR-S has high levels of refinement and the option of ultra-fast manual shifts controlled by steering wheel-mounted paddles – with shift times measured in milliseconds.
To match its increased performance, the XKR-S has the most powerful brakes on any Jaguar production model, plus extensive changes to its suspension and steering to provide further enhanced ride and handling without compromising comfort.
The high performance braking system was developed by Jaguar’s Special Vehicles team in partnership with British competition brake specialist Alcon, which supplies the stopping power for some of the fastest cars in the world, on both road and track. The brakes were perfected over thousands of kilometres of testing on some of Europe’s most demanding roads, and by Jaguar’s engineering team at the Nurburgring racetrack in Germany. There are 400mm diameter discs on the front and 350mm discs at the rear. Each disc is radially ventilated for maximum cooling and to resist fade even under the hardest use. The friction surfaces of each disc carry a series of crescent-shaped grooves that help clear water from the discs during wet weather and help to keep the brake pads clean at all times. The brakes have lightweight monobloc six-piston callipers at the front and four-piston callipers at the rear – each calliper finished in a distinctive red and carrying the R logo.
The XKR-S gets new springs, new anti-roll bars and unique dampers. All the major suspension parameters are recalibrated, and the XKR-S uses Jaguar’s Computer Active Technology Suspension (CATS) with unique tuning. It also uses a faster ratio steering rack, for quicker reactions and optimum feel. The limited edition coupe in Ultimate Black is identified by the unique XKR-S badge on the rear of the car. The exterior has been subtly enhanced to make it “recognisably different without being overstated.”
Another significant element in the revised handling package is that the ride height of the XKR-S has been reduced by 10mm compared with that of the XKR, and the XKR-S sits on unique, lightweight 20-inch Vortex forged alloy wheels with bespoke tyres.
The car has a new front aerodynamic splitter, side sill extensions, revised rear spoiler and rear diffuser panel, with contrasting finishes to details such as the front mesh grille, power vents, sills and rear diffuser panel. The XKR-S has an Active Exhaust System, which is specifically tuned to ensure quiet, refined high-speed cruising while producing a much more hard-edged and sporting V8 sound under hard acceleration – not over loud, but full of performance character. Inside, full soft grain leather trim is finished in Charcoal with Ivory twin-needle contrast stitching, with leather wrapping the seats, instrument panel top, centre console, inner door panels and rear side panels. That’s complemented by Piano Black veneer, Charcoal Alston luxury headlining, plus a revised instrument cluster – calibrated to accommodate the higher top speed – with XKR-S branding. The contrast-stitched leather trimmed steering wheel, alloy and leather gear selector with alloy surround, bright aluminium pedals, and XKR-S branded head-restraints, tread-plates and carpet mats further set the tone for this very special interior. Jaguar is building only 200 XKR-Ss, and says the car will go only to European markets. But maybe, just maybe one will escape and head down under?