Jaguar XE SV Project 8 Will Have 592 Horsepower and Hit 200 MPH

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Super sedan’s record power and advanced hardware will make it “the most powerful, agile and extreme performance Jaguar road car ever produced.”

Jaguar Land Rover’s Special Vehicle Operations (SVO) division did more than just throw a big engine into Jaguar’s smallest sedan to create the XE SV Project 8. A lot more.

For starters, they took an XE and gave it a lighter, more aerodynamically-effective skin. They replaced the front bumper and fenders with carbon fiber pieces. The two-position manually adjustable front splitter is also made out of carbon fiber, as are the side skirts, rear bumper, and diffuser. A flat underbody and manually adjustable two-position rear wing keeps the back end planted. Switching from an aluminum hood to a carbon fiber hood with an integrated air extraction duct saved 6.6 pounds. No word on how many pounds the Titanium Variable Active Exhaust tailpipes saved, but every bit counts. Total weight of the supercharged V8-powered Project 8 is a claimed 3,847 pounds, less than a 60-pound increase relative to the 2018 XE S with a supercharged V6 and all-wheel drive.

Under Project 8’s vented hood is an ultra-high-output version of the familiar supercharged 5.0-liter V8. Thanks to the retuned engine calibration software and improved intake and exhaust airflow, it now generates 592 horsepower – a record for a street-legal Jaguar – and 516 lb-ft of torque. Sixty mph comes up in 3.3 seconds. Top speed is a flat 200 mph.

That tweaked engine is paired with a re-calibrated eight-speed Quickshift automatic. Gear changes occur in as little as 200 milliseconds. All-wheel drive with an Electronic Active Differential (an XE first) that controls torque delivery to the rear wheels puts the enhanced V8’s ample power to the ground. Torque Vectoring by Braking tech clamps down on individual inside brakes during cornering to help Project 8 rotate and understeer less.

Manually adjustable Continuously Variable Shock Absorbers give Project 8 a 15-mm lower ride height out on the track. Jaguar’s Carbon Ceramic Brake (CCB) system makes its debut on Project 8, which is equipped with 15.7-inch two-piece front discs with six-piston calipers and 15.6-inch two-piece rear discs with one-piston sliding calipers. That stopping hardware sits behind 20-inch forged aluminum alloys with Formula 1-style silicon nitride ceramic bearings.

Inside the Project 8, there’s Alcantara, Gloss Carbon Fiber accents, a 4G Wi-Fi hotspot, a 12.3-inch TFT instrument panel display with full-screen 3D Map View nav, and two firsts. The Pistolshift lever is new to the XE; the Track Mode, which adjusts the Intelligent Driveline Dynamics, Adaptive Dynamics, Dynamic Stability Control (DSC), ABS, Torque Vectoring by Braking, and EPAS for motorsports use, is a first for Jaguar. Unfortunately, the North American market will only be able to get Project 8 in a four-seater configuration. Customers in other markets will be able to order Project 8 as a two-seater with carbon fiber racing seats, four-point harnesses, and a harness retention hoop in place of the back seats.

The Project 8 officially made its debut on Friday, June 30 during the Goodwood Festival of Speed and check out the video below of its debut run. Jaguar/SVO will only make 300 of them (with left-hand drive only) at a rather outragous price that’s already got some of you on Jaguar Forums talking…

Chime in with your thoughts on the forum. >>

Derek Shiekhi contributes to a variety of Internet Brands’ Auto sites, including J-K Forum , Jaguar Forums, and 5 Series. He's also a member of the Texas Auto Writers Association.

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