The 2010 Jaguar XKR gets a head to toe technical makeover, with new electronically controlled dampers and a much more powerful engine. But it still looks basically the same. That's good.
“Built in tradition of great and tourers, with state-of-the-art engineering, aerospace-inspired construction and outstanding driving dynamics, the new XK is the latest in a long line of legendary performance Jaguars.” Mike O’Driscoll, Managing Director, Jaguar Cars.
The Jaguar sports car experience moves on to a new level in 2009 with the introduction of a new generation of the XK Coupe and Convertible.
With all-new engines, even more dramatic looks, a new interior, an advanced lightweight aluminum body structure and a wider range of models, the new XK builds on 60 years of legendary performance to deliver the best of everything Jaguar.
Designated 2010 model year but available summer 2009, the new XK range not only stands out from the crowd, it stands apart. The combined efforts of Jaguar's designers and engineers have produced a car that utilizes advanced technologies at a higher level than ever before.
The benefits of the XK's lightweight but incredibly stiff and strong chassis are already acknowledged. Not only does this architecture bring dynamic benefits thanks to its torsional rigidity, it also offers excellent safety and crash repair features – and provides the ideal base to optimize performance across the board, including fuel economy and CO2 emissions.
"The philosophy at Jaguar is for our designers and engineers to work together with all areas of the Jaguar business to develop elegant, inspired solutions to complex technical challenges. The result is great products – and the new XK is a perfect example." Mike O'Driscoll, Managing Director, Jaguar Cars
The all-new AJ-V8 Gen III engines are the most efficient Jaguar has ever produced. They deliver significantly more power and torque than the previous generation of engines: 510bhp and 461lb-ft of torque in the new supercharged XKR and 385bhp and 380lb-ft in the XK Portfolio.
With the introduction of these all-new 5.0-liter direct-injection V8 engines comes a new level of performance for the XK, with improved acceleration from standstill and stunning in-gear acceleration times. All models are electronically limited to a maximum speed of 155mph, but the 0-60mph sprint for naturally aspirated coupe models falls from 5.9 to 5.2 seconds, while for the supercharged XKR Coupe, 0-60mph is reduced from 4.9 to 4.6 seconds.
And yet thanks to a combination of excellent powertrain efficiency and the XK's advanced lightweight body architecture, all XKs offer strong fuel economy and impressive CO2 emissions ratings. Fuel economy is comparable to the previous generation of XK – despite the significant increases in performance – and CO2 emissions from each engine are better than the out-going versions, with the naturally aspirated version improving on that of the 4.2-liter V8 by two percent, while the supercharged engine produces one percent less CO2 than its predecessor. Indeed, the new generation XK is among the very best in both fuel economy and emissions for any V8-engined sports car.
"With an all-new, supercharged AJ-V8 engine and dramatic new looks, the new XKR has all the performance, power and panache that you expect in the ultimate sporting Jaguar." Mike O'Driscoll, Managing Director, Jaguar Cars
Allowing the engines to optimize their power is one of the most sophisticated transmissions available. Jaguar’s acclaimed electronically controlled, six-speed ZF 6HP28 transmission offers an unparalleled combination of driver control matched to virtually undetectable gearshifts. With control either from steering wheel-mounted paddles or full automatic mode via the JaguarDrive SelectorTM, which is new for the 10 Model Year XK, the transmission is now paired with an advanced electronic differential on the XKR model to ensure it accelerates even faster, handles more precisely and sets new standards of dynamic control and excellence.
There are two core models in the new XK range: the highly equipped XK Portfolio and the XKR, each with its own sporting character. In addition to the many changes under the skin, the new XKs are visually different to the previous generation. Each still looks just like a Jaguar should look – seductive, powerful and elegant – but all models, coupe and convertible, introduce revised exterior styling that underlines Jaguar’s contemporary thinking on design.
Inside, quality levels are raised even further with new interior trim and finishes that demonstrate Jaguar’s renowned craftsmanship, plus even more comprehensive specification. The driver is the center of attention, with exciting new ideas, including the acclaimed JaguarDrive Selector™, Adaptive Dynamics with Active Differential Control and comfort features such as heated and cooled seats – taking the driving experience of the new XK range to even higher levels of luxury alongside the improved performance.
“The new XK delivers more power, more performance and more technology – without compromise. It moves the Jaguar sports car experience on to a whole new level.” Mick Mohan, Director, Jaguar Programmes
The new XK range at a glance
– New generation of Jaguar XK sports coupe and convertible
– Exterior styling revised on all models
– Advanced aluminum body architecture is strong and lightweight and the key to optimizing performance, dynamic agility and competitive CO2 emissions and fuel economy
– All-new AJ-V8 Gen III direct-injection engines are the most powerful and efficient engines Jaguar has ever produced:
• 5.0-liter supercharged V8 delivers 510bhp, 461lb-ft of torque and propels XKR Coupe to 60mph in just 4.6 seconds.
• 5.0-liter naturally aspirated V8 engine delivers 385bhp, 380lb-ft of torque and propels XK Portfolio Coupe to 60mph in just 5.2 seconds.
– Improved CO2 emissions performance and comparable fuel economy to the smaller capacity and less powerful engines they replace
– New generation of XK is true to the heritage of Jaguar’s legendary performance and offers class-leading refinement and advanced technologies
– State-of-the-art six-speed automatic transmission has seamless gearshifts, plus for the first time on the XKR model an electronic differential to optimize traction and dynamic performance
– New design features, including exciting customer-friendly technologies such as the JaguarDrive SelectorTM first seen on the XF, further enhance performance, driving dynamics and the XK range’s unique luxury sporting character.
– Now two models in the range: XK Portfolio and XKR. Styling revisions include a new front bumper, new side mirrors with integrated LED side repeater, rear bumper spoiler, rear LED lights and color-coded side power vents for both coupe and convertible versions
– First customer deliveries in summer 2009.
All performance figures are manufacturer’s estimates.
THE NEW XK RANGE IN DETAIL
The new XK is a sophisticated grand tourer with the heart of a true sports car, combining effortless high-performance and state-of-the-art V8 powertrains with a new layer of advanced technologies, intuitive control, and Jaguar’s superbly crafted, new-fashioned luxury interiors. The range will continue to include both naturally aspirated XK and supercharged XKR, available in 2+2 coupe or convertible body styles.
All-new AJ-V8 Gen III 5.0-liter direct-injection engines bring significant improvements in power and torque and they do so with no compromise in terms of fuel economy and emissions. In both respects, every car in the new XK range, in spite of such large performance and flexibility gains, is comparable to their predecessors.
The impressive fuel economy is directly attributable to the combination of the XK range’s lowest-in-class weight and the all-new AJ-V8 Gen III engines. As well as the intrinsic advantages of the engines’ exceptionally light weight and compact dimensions, these technically advanced all-aluminum four-cam power units offer a number of features that deliver power with very high efficiency, including spray-guided direct injection (SGDI), which improves performance and economy, and dual independent variable cam timing (DIVCT), which benefits performance and economy and also reduces emissions.
The simplified and logical model range for the new XK essentially comprises just two clear choices – XK Portfolio and XKR. Each has its own specific choices of trim, color and fine detail, but every one has the same underlying sporting character and clear emphasis on efficient performance, luxury and craftsmanship. Beyond that, the XK vehicle personalization program also offers an extensive range of accessories that allow the customer to add further bespoke touches – inside and out.
Stunning performance increases
In naturally aspirated form, the new AJ-V8 Gen III 5.0-liter engine delivers 385bhp and 380lb-ft of torque – respectively 26 and 23 percent more than its 4.2-liter predecessor. The XKR’s supercharged 5.0-liter AJ-V8 Gen III R delivers a mighty 510bhp and 461lb-ft of torque – improvements of 23 and 12 percent respectively over the supercharged 4.2-liter engine.
On the road, while maximum speed remains under electronic control at 155mph, these power and torque gains allied to the lightweight aluminum body architecture of the
XK dramatically reduce acceleration times. For the naturally aspirated XK Portfolio, 0-60mph is reduced from 5.9 to 5.2 seconds; for the supercharged XKR, 0-60mph is reduced from 4.9 to 4.6 seconds.
The supercharged XKR is also impressively efficient, with an average consumption of 23.0mpg and a CO2 rating of 292g/km – an improvement over the previous XKR – and a remarkable 16 and 17 percent better, respectively, than the equivalent figures for the BMW M6.
Crucially, however, the XK also continues to better its closest rivals on economy and CO2 ratings, with an average consumption of 25.2mpg and a CO2 figure of 264g/km – a seven percent improvement on the equivalent figures for the Mercedes-Benz SL500.
The Looks – exterior styling
Visible changes on the new XK Portfolio and XKR reflect the significant changes under the skin. Carefully revised exteriors take the seductive, powerful, elegant lines that define Jaguar’s new design language and interpret them for a dramatically beautiful 2+2 sports car whose shape is even more taut, powerful and athletic. Evoking the essence of performance long before it moves, the new XK family shape is unmistakably ‘new-school’ sporting Jaguar: wholly contemporary, finely sculpted, efficiently packaged and precisely detailed.
Design Director Ian Callum outlines the new design features on the XK range:
“The current XK was the first car to signify a new generation of Jaguars – cars that have honed our image every bit as successfully as the original XK120 or E-type. Now the new XK range reinforces that message. The cars’ visual agility and beautiful lines have been enhanced with a distinctive new front end, rear lights and revised body styling that gives every model even more presence.”
The exterior changes for both the naturally aspirated XK Portfolio and the supercharged XKR are highlighted by a distinctive and purposeful new front bumper design, new LED rear lights and a new lower rear bumper spoiler. New LED rear light clusters incorporating fog lamps plus twin reversing lamps (rather than the previous single units) give every car in the new XK range a unique ‘night time signature’, while LED technology is also included in the integrated side repeater and approach lamps in the new exterior mirrors. Every car in the new XK range also features new engine covers and revised, body-colored side power vents.
Beyond the shared changes, subtle differences in detail distinguish each of the three models in the new XK range. Both the naturally aspirated XK Portfolio and the supercharged XKR display purposeful front bumper features with stylish, chrome-detailed inserts and further chrome detailing to the upper mesh grille. The XKR is set apart by also featuring chrome on its lower mesh grille - which is finished in black on the XK Portfolio model. All models now feature chrome detailing on window surrounds and rear signature blade, and in addition the XKR comes with a new rear bumper spoiler that is finished in body color and a revised tailpipe design further emphasizing its sporting performance.
The Looks – interior styling
Contemporary, sporting luxury, exceptional quality of craftsmanship and Jaguar’s renowned attention to detail are the keynotes of the new XK range’s enhanced interiors. The cabin is clean, elegant, spacious and remains entirely in harmony with the sporty character of the revised exterior.
The luxury character of the new XK range, however, is guaranteed, regardless of the customer’s choice of body style – hard-topped coupe or fabric-roofed convertible. Both benefit from the inherent strength of Jaguar’s lightweight aluminum architecture, which means that as well as being the lightest body structure in its class, the XK Portfolio and XKR’s shells also have the highest torsional strength. And that exceptional rigidity, with or without a fixed roof, means creak and rattle-free refinement on virtually any surface, however unforgiving.
Beyond that, the convertible’s triple-lined fabric roof gives a level of fit and stability even at very high speeds that minimizes wind noise and other road noise and includes a luxurious interior finish almost indistinguishable from a fixed roof. In addition, XK Portfolio and XKR models feature luxurious Jaguar Suedecloth headlining as standard.
It can, however, be powered up or down at the touch of a button in less than 18 seconds. And when it is lowered, the convertible’s flush-folding roof retracts completely into the bodywork behind the rear seats, under a smooth cover that retains the elegant, sporty lines of the car.
Nor does the convertible compromise the new XK range’s safety, for its roll-over protection system, which remains hidden unless it is needed, deploys instantaneously as necessary to provide occupants with the highest levels of protection.
For both coupe and convertible, the latest trim and feature enhancements are highlighted by the JaguarDrive Selector™, which is very neatly and elegantly packaged in the center console. The welcome to the car is also enhanced by new, bright treadplate inserts. Many of the other changes emphasize very high levels of Jaguar craftsmanship with new jewel-like touches. The three-spoke steering wheel now has a leather-wrapped lower spoke and Jaguar’s striking ‘growler’ badge. The new XKR’s instruments now further emphasize its performance character with red pointers, while all models adopt a new white illumination for their instruments.
New heated and cooled front seats are standard equipment on the new XK Portfolio and available on XKR with the optional R Performance interior. The XKR features 10-way seat adjustability for both driver and passenger seats, with heating and memory functions as standard and unique R seat style. The XK Portfolio and XKR with the optional R Performance interior have 16-way adjustable seats with heating and memory functions, adjustable side bolsters and new cooled seats as standard.
The door casings are even more luxuriously crafted than before, with saddle-stitched lines and a new interlayer to give a softer touch to the top shoulder of the casing. The leather door pulls also introduce twin-needle stitching and a soft-feel interlayer. In each door, the modified seat switch pack now includes single-piece chrome ‘highlight’ switches.
There is a wide choice of interior color options, including a new combination of Ivory seating with Oyster upper cabin trim and Oyster carpets. Soft-grain leather with contrast stitching is standard in the new XK Portfolio and in the new R Performance XKR.
Real wood veneers remain an important part of Jaguar craftsmanship and now include a new Rich Oak veneer option for the XK alongside the classic Burr Walnut for both models. The new XK range also offers the choice of Ebony uniquely for the new XK Portfolio, while the new XKR offers its own unique alternative in Dark Oak. A Knurled Aluminum veneer is also available on XK Portfolio, while Dark Mesh Aluminum is available on XKR.
Globally recognized as one of the key elements in Jaguar’s intelligent use of advanced technology, the XK’s industry-leading lightweight architecture constructs the entire body shell (the internal chassis structure and external body panels) from a combination of pressed, cast and extruded aluminum alloy components. These are riveted and bonded together using techniques originally developed in the aerospace industry and adapted for automotive use by Jaguar.
The result is a body shell with a depth of quality that is rooted in the highest structural integrity. It is also the lightest shell in its class by a significant margin and the most torsionally stiff. That all-round strength, remarkable rigidity and exceptional lightness underpin many aspects of the XK’s excellence, from fuel-efficient performance to its inherent safety, durability and refinement – and, of course, its precise chassis dynamics.
Mike Cross, Vehicle Integrity Chief Engineer, explains the benefits of this advanced body architecture:
“Lightness benefits agility, and agility with high performance defines the exhilarating yet refined nature of the Jaguar XK. It accelerates harder, stops more quickly and handles with true precision – setting new standards of dynamic excellence.”
All-new XK Powertrain Technology
• New AJ-V8 Gen III engines are more compact, more efficient and much more powerful
• 385bhp, 380lb-ft, 264g/km CO2, 25.2mpg combined fuel economy (naturally aspirated)
• 510bhp, 461lb-ft, 292g/km CO2, 23.0mpg combined fuel economy (supercharged – the Gen III R)
• Conforms to US ULEV II emissions regulations
• High efficiency, sixth-generation twin vortex supercharger on Gen III R engine
• Central spray-guided direct-injection increases efficiency and torque
• Torque-actuated variable camshaft timing on all four camshafts for improved response and efficiency
• Cam profile switching in naturally aspirated engine
• Variable-geometry inlet manifold on naturally aspirated engine further increases low and high-end torque
• Low-friction design optimizes fuel consumption
• 15,000-mile service intervals compared to 10,000-mile intervals on 4.2-liter models
Since the first XK was launched in 1948, generations of powerful yet refined engines have played a crucial role in establishing the unique character and pedigree of Jaguar cars. Now, the new 5.0-liter direct-injection engines continue that tradition, delivering increased power and torque with reduced emissions and impressive fuel economy. Available in two versions, the 510bhp supercharged V8 and the naturally aspirated 385bhp version, the new AJ-V8 Gen III engines exemplify Jaguar’s reputation for innovation and engineering excellence.
Commenting on the new engine range, Ron Lee, Powertrain Group Chief Engineer, said:
“We set ourselves the challenge of developing an all-new V8 engine series that improved on the performance and the refinement of the excellent 4.2-liter, with comparable fuel economy and improved emissions. We have achieved that with the AJ-V8 Gen III – a superbly responsive power unit of unsurpassed efficiency.”
Jaguar’s all-new V8s have been designed in-house, using the expertise of powertrain engineers at Jaguar’s advanced research and development centre at Whitley, Coventry, UK.
Malcolm Sandford, Engine Group Chief Engineer, explains the concept behind the project:
“The emphasis was on delivering efficiency, superior dynamic response and highly accessible low-end torque suited to real-world driving, without compromising power at higher engine speeds.”
The results are clear to see. Performance has been increased by 29 percent and 23 percent (87 and 94bhp) on both naturally aspirated and supercharged engines yet both the naturally aspirated and supercharged engines meet US ULEV II emissions regulations. Despite the significant increases in power, CO2 emissions of the naturally aspirated engine improve on that of the outgoing 4.2-liter V8, while the supercharged engine also produces less CO2 than its predecessor.
Top of the class in more ways than one
Both new AJ-V8 Gen III engines are state-of-the-art in every sense. The technical features have been engineered to deliver unparalleled efficiency, refinement, power and torque for which Jaguar is famous, combined with the lowest possible emissions. Low-speed torque characteristics and throttle response is world-class, while the supercharged version is the most economical 510bhp engine in the market to date.
Summarizing this achievement, Jaguar Programme Director, Mick Mohan, said:
“These engines have been designed by our Powertrain team of over 800 people for the next generation of Jaguar cars. They deliver fantastic straight-line performance and response which is second to none. The combination of power, refinement and driveability is what our customers expect of Jaguar. They are smooth around town, but when you want to drive quickly, the engines are hugely responsive and deliver that classic, Jaguar sound quality.”
Light, robust and very strong
The new V8 engines are built around a stiff, all-new, aluminum block with cast-in iron liners and cross-bolted main bearing caps to reduce noise, vibration and harshness. For the first time at Jaguar the blocks are high pressure die-cast, providing a superior finish and greater dimensional accuracy. The engines use aluminum heads, with four valves per cylinder and strong, spheroidal-graphite cast-iron crankshafts and forged steel connecting rods. The cylinder heads for the first time are specified with a secondary (recycled) aluminum alloy thus reducing the environmental impact of manufacturing the new engine.
The new 5.0-liter direct injection engines are more compact than their predecessors. Overall engine length has been reduced by 0.94-in. by relocation of the oil pump within the engine architecture. This length reduction improves engine bay packaging in support of enhanced safety cell performance while ensuring overall engine weight is virtually unchanged.
New supercharger – more for less
A sixth-generation, twin vortex system (TVS) supercharger is fitted to the XKR’s 510bhp engine. It is a compact Roots-type unit, feeding air through twin intercoolers, which in turn are water-cooled by their own discreet cooling circuit. The high helix rotor design improves the supercharger thermodynamic efficiency by 16 percent over its predecessor. It also improves noise quality to the point where the unit is now virtually inaudible (making supercharger whine a thing of the past). The intercoolers reduce the temperature of the pressurized intake-air and so optimize power and efficiency.
The new air intake has been radically redesigned compared to the previous V8. The intake air path is a direct feed to the supercharger inlet from the centrally mounted front throttle body. Air is delivered through twin air boxes, which reduce flow loss and further increase efficiency.
Mechanically, the new supercharger and its intercoolers are efficiently packaged in the ‘V‘ of the engine to deliver a low overall engine height in support of pedestrian safety requirements.
Industry-first direct injection - power with economy
One of the key features of the new engines is an industry-first, centrally-mounted, multi-hole, spray-guided fuel injection system, delivering fuel at a pressure of up to 150bar directly to the cylinder. This substantially contributes to improved low-speed, dynamic response. The positioning of the injectors ensures fuel is precisely delivered to the center of the combustion chamber, maximizing air-fuel mixing, and improving combustion control. Fuel is delivered via twin, high-pressure fuel pumps that are driven via auxiliary shaft in the all-new engine block.
The charge cooling effects of the direct-injection fuel system have allowed the compression ratio of the naturally aspirated engine to be raised to 11.5:1, further improving the engine economy. The supercharged engine also benefits from an increase from 9.0:1 in the previous 4.2-liter to 9.5:1.
During the engine warm-up phase, the combustion system employs multiple injection mode strategies to deliver 50 percent more heat for fast catalyst warm-up and substantially reduced emissions.
Torque-actuated variable-camshaft timing improves efficiency
A new type of variable camshaft timing system (VCT) introduces another new technology. The four VCT units are activated by the positive and negative torques generated by opening and closing the intake and exhaust valves, instead of by oil pressure. This has allowed the engine oil pump to be reduced in size, saving energy and reducing fuel consumption.
VCT units work independently on all four camshafts with 62 degrees of authority on the inlet cams and 50 degrees of authority on the exhaust cams. Timing is optimized by the engine control unit for torque, power and economy at every point in the engine’s speed range.
The new VCT units are capable of a response rate up to three times faster than before, with actuation rates in excess of 150 degrees per second. This delivers a more immediate engine response to the driver’s demand.
The naturally aspirated engine is also equipped with camshaft profile switching (CPS) on the inlet camshaft. Depending on the engine’s running conditions and the demands of the driver, the CPS will switch between a profile that is ideal for low-speed driving and another which gives increased valve lift for high performance.
Hydraulically-actuated two-piece tappets switch between profiles on the tri-lobe camshaft altering both the lift and duration. The cam lobe profile selected for lower engine speeds has a duration of 214° and lifts the valves 0.22-in. This optimizes gas velocity for improved low-speed torque and reduces valvetrain friction for improved fuel economy. For high-speed driving, CPS switches to a cam lobe with a duration of 250° and valve-lift of 0.41-in., allowing greater air flow into the engine for high power. Switching is activated at 2800rpm at high load, ranging to 4500rpm at light load conditions.
Variable Inlet Manifold optimizes torque through the rev range
A new variable inlet manifold (VIM) can vary the length of its eight inlet tracts to optimize power and torque throughout the rev range on the naturally aspirated engine. Vacuum-operated actuators open valves to select a longer, 27-in., inlet tract at low revs, increasing the rate of both the airflow and the engine torque. As the revs climb beyond 4700rpm, the actuators select a shorter, 14-in. path allowing a greater volume of air into the engine to optimize engine power. The actuator position is optimized by the engine control unit for improved torque throughout the engine speed range.
Reverse cooling turns up the heat
Every component in both V8 engines has been optimized for efficiency, performance, low-end torque and reliability. An innovative reverse-flow cooling system design has been employed to deliver thermodynamic and friction improvements. The reverse-flow cooling system pumps coolant through the cylinder heads before flowing through the block and returning to the radiator. The resulting cooler cylinder heads allow more optimum, knock-free, ignition timings to be used to improve efficiency.
In addition, the 22kW oil-to-water heat exchanger, packaged at the core of the engine, transfers heat from the coolant to the lubricating oil during warm up, bringing the oil up to operating temperature 14 percent faster than the previous cooling system. This improves fuel consumption in the crucial engine warm-up period by approximately 1%.
Reducing friction – something for nothing
Minimizing internal friction is key to improving fuel consumption and CO2 emissions, and as such was a key aim when it came to the design of the engines. As a result, the new Jaguar AJ-V8 Gen III engines achieve another best in class, setting a new industry benchmark for cranktrain efficiency.
All engine bearings were the subject of an extensive optimization program, reducing friction without compromising reliability. Diamond-Like Carbon Coating (DLC) has been used to reduce friction on the fuel pump tappets and a solid film lubricant has been used to coat the piston skirts. New engine oil has a lower viscosity, contributing to an extension in service intervals from 10,000 miles to 15,000 miles or 12 months. Both V8 engines are now fitted with an electronic dipstick feature for added peace of mind.
Unique, Jaguar sound quality
Sound quality is a key characteristic of all Jaguars and is one particular aspect that customers relish. With that in mind, Jaguar engineers have accentuated the acoustic feedback into the cabin in order to further enhance the driving pleasure.
The XK's exhaust sound track has been enhanced to provide a deeper and more powerful character that matches the increase in torque at low revs from the new engine. At higher engine speeds the intake acoustic feedback system combines with the exhaust system to provide more of that unique Jaguar sound quality character.
In addition to the fully active exhaust system in which valves open to provide a more rewarding note, the new XKR has been engineered to provide an intake feedback system to enhance the V8 sound character commonly absent on supercharged engines. Intake manifold pressure pulsations are fed into an acoustic filter at the rear of the engine that is tuned to provide an edgy sports car crescendo at high revs. The filter is controlled by the engine management system, which only allows the sound to enter the cabin under the appropriate driving conditions.
The new intake feedback system combined with the fully active exhaust system provides the most exhilarating sound track yet delivered on a Jaguar.
New, integrated transmission completes the package
Any transmission is a major factor in delivering the performance that drivers’ desire, while integrating with the engine to optimize emissions and fuel consumption. Jaguar’s acclaimed electronically controlled, six-speed ZF 6HP28 transmission offers an unparalleled combination of driver control matched to virtually undetectable gearshifts. With control either from steering wheel-mounted paddles or full automatic mode via the JaguarDrive SelectorTM, the new XK range delivers exhilarating performance.
The supercharged V8 engine with 510bhp and 461lb-ft of torque transmits power through an uprated version of the ZF 6HP28, additional clutch plates and an uprated torque converter having been added to the transmission to accommodate the extra power.
The transmission has a fully-adaptive shift system which delivers seamless gearshifts and optimizes performance and economy at all times. It also continually adapts to suit driving style, which can vary from sporting to more economical. The ‘mechatronic’ control module incorporated inside the transmission includes the software for the semi-automatic Jaguar Sequential Shift function, selected when the driver operates either of the two steering-wheel paddles.
The high levels of torque produced by the new engines make it possible for the torque converter lock-up feature of the transmission to be used even at low speeds, without slip. This approach provides an additional fuel consumption benefit, contributing to the official combined fuel economy of 23.0mpg in the XKR. The advanced design of the transmission also includes a torsional damper to absorb firing impulses from the engine, further smoothing the driveline. The transmission is designed to be maintenance-free and the fluid is ‘filled-for-life.’
Another first for Jaguar is the new Active Differential Control (ADC), the final stage of the supercharged V8 driveline, which is designed to give improved traction and dynamic stability. The electronically controlled differential continuously adapts to both the driver’s demands and the amount of grip available at each individual wheel. Operated by an internal electric motor and ‘ball-and-ramp’ mechanism, the differential contains a multi-plate clutch which transmits or ‘vectors’ torque to the wheel with most grip and therefore maximizes the car’s traction. The multi-plate clutch assembly is designed to prevent excessive differential slip, but differs fundamentally from a conventional traction control system, which uses the brakes to counteract differential slip, after it has occurred.
For the first time, the new XK range introduces the innovative JaguarDrive Selector™ as its transmission control interface. First seen on the Jaguar XF sedan, the JaguarDrive Selector™ features a rotary shift control which rises into the driver’s hand as the car is started, to give intuitive, ergonomically efficient transmission control from an extremely neat, space-efficient interface.
The selector is, in fact, much more than just an unobtrusive yet completely practical solution to selecting an automatic gear mode. For it also imbues the car with a strong driver 'handshake'. Get into an XK and the start button in front of the JaguarDrive SelectorTM pulses red, like a heartbeat. Press this button to start the engine and the cast alloy JaguarDrive SelectorTM rises into the palm of your hand.
From there, automatic transmission functions are selected simply by turning the control with the fingertips. As an example, Drive to Drive Sport selection is accomplished with a simple push and turn action. Returning from S to D, the rotary control operates with spring-assistance, which eliminates the need to pull the Selector. It couldn’t be simpler. And when the engine is stopped, the JaguarDrive Selector™ returns automatically to its Park position.
“The XK has always been an exceptional sports GT, now it has evolved into something even more exhilarating in the form of the XKR. With huge reserves of power and torque it sets new standards of dynamic balance, succeeding in being both very potent and rewarding yet balanced and accessible at the same time.”
Mike Cross, Vehicle Integrity Chief Engineer.
The new ‘handshake’ of the JaguarDrive Control is a subtle reminder of the new XK range’s further enhanced sporting character and superb dynamics, that make the driving experience exceptionally exciting and rewarding, as expected of a true sports car and a classic grand tourer. The latest generation of Adaptive Dynamics replaces Jaguar’s proven Computer Active Technology Suspension (CATS) with an even more sophisticated solution. Active damper tuning systems remove many of the compromises of a passive damping system - which must make a single choice between softer damping for a comfortable ride and firmer damping for more tautly controlled handling. CATS overcame that compromise with automatically switchable damping modes, adapting to the road and how the car was driven. But where CATS only offered two settings: 'soft' and 'firm', the new Adaptive Damping System in effect provides a continuously variable damping strategy between wide extremes, benefitting ride comfort, ultimate control handling and grip.
Its three primary functions are to control body vertical movement, roll rate and pitch rate. One hundred times a second, Adaptive Damping analyzes induced body motions and sets each damper to an appropriate level in order to maintain a constant and level body attitude – optimizing control without compromising ride. Also one hundred times a second, it predicts the roll rate due to steering inputs and selectively increases damping forces to reduce the roll rate – improving handling feel and driver confidence. And one hundred times a second, Adaptive Damping analyzes fore and aft pitch rate due to throttle and braking inputs and again varies damping forces to reduce pitch – further improving comfort and control.
Additionally, Adaptive Dynamics improves ride quality by monitoring wheel position five hundred times a second and automatically increasing damping rate as the suspension approaches the limits of its travel. Similarly it controls wheel hop on uneven roads by varying damping to move any wheel out of its natural bouncing frequency.
From the cabin, the JaguarDrive Control™ interface allows the driver to interact with Adaptive Dynamics by selecting modes for different driving conditions and moods. In Dynamic Mode, Adaptive Dynamics increases body control for a sportier feel. Dynamic Mode also interacts with the management electronics to give a more responsive accelerator pedal reaction and quicker gearshift responses.
Winter Mode was introduced on the XF and makes its first appearance in the XK range here, adding another element of dynamic subtlety. Where Dynamic Mode offers a more sporty feel, Winter Mode offers a more damped accelerator pedal response for progressive control in slippery conditions, with bespoke shift settings that delay and soften gearshifts, again for better control with low grip.
In keeping with its additional power and performance, the new XKR offers the most sophisticated dynamic control of all, with Active Differential Control and Adaptive Dynamics operating in tandem to offer JaguarDrive Optimization™. This fully integrates the functions of JaguarDrive Control™ and Adaptive Dynamics with the new Active Differential Control (ADC) – an electronically controlled alternative to the traditional mechanical limited-slip differential, with far more subtle control strategies.
ADC is fully automatic and can vary its locking torque (and therefore the proportion of torque sent to each driven wheel) depending on surface conditions and power applied. Its subtle control strategies optimize traction at each wheel, improving acceleration on low-grip surfaces but also potentially improving stability when required.
Working with other systems such as traction control and the ABS braking function, ADC can significantly improve overall vehicle performance, and provide more precise driving feel.
While the less powerful XK Portfolio does not adopt the Active Differential Control of the XKR, they do still utilize a new upgraded mechanical differential, which delivers outstanding levels of grip and stability under power.
The Dynamic Stability Control system for the new XK range has bespoke tuning and offers four driver-selectable modes, Normal, Winter, Trac DSC and DSC OFF, for all models. Normal mode is ideal for everyday driving and is the default setting activated automatically on starting. The Winter mode – introduced for the first time on the XK range – is designed to improve drivability and confidence in more slippery conditions. Trac DSC mode is a sportier setting allowing the experienced driver to fully exploit the car’s performance and enjoy greater involvement in controlling it. DSC OFF allows the driver (where circumstances are appropriate) to switch the system’s electronic protection off completely, by pushing the DSC control button for ten seconds.
Technology and driving aids
The new XK Portfolio and XKR, in both coupe and convertible form, offer a number of other driver aids that exploit the latest advanced technology. Staying faithful to its well-established principles, Jaguar uses these technologies to empower, not to overpower the user – enhancing driver and passenger enjoyment rather than risking high-technology overkill.
Among the new XK range’s practical features are intelligent front lighting incorporating bi-xenon automatic headlamps with power wash; dynamic headlamp leveling; corner lights that are activated by the direction indicators to improve visibility while cornering; and the option of Active Front Lighting. Standard equipment across the new XK range also includes air sensors to optimize cabin air quality through the climate control system, keyless start, cruise control, electro-chromatic fold-back exterior mirrors, and front and rear Park Assist.
Jaguar’s Emergency Brake Assist is standard on the new XK and Advanced Emergency Brake Assist is fitted to all models with Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC). Advanced Emergency Brake Assist uses the ACC radar to calculate distance from and speed of approach to the vehicle ahead and pre-charges the brake-line pressure to minimize impact speed if a collision is predicted – with an audible warning to the driver.
For the occupant, every car in the new XK range includes front, side and thorax airbags, incorporating new technology which reduces the load on the occupant’s body if the front airbag is deployed. Jaguar’s Adaptive Restraint Technology System checks for seat occupation, seatbelt use, seat position, and the direction and severity of any impact, and uses all that information to determine the appropriate level of airbag deployment in any incident. Additionally, Jaguar’s Protec front head restraint system protects against whiplash in the event of a rear impact.
Stylish new wheels
The new XK range introduces five new alloy wheel designs, some of them replacing earlier designs, some introducing completely new additional choices. Together, they bring the total number of alloy wheel options on the new XK range to six.
The new 19-inch ten-‘V’-spoke Caravela wheel is now standard on XK Portfolio. The all-new 19-inch 10-fan-spoke Artura design is available in painted or chromed finishes and in conventional or run-flat types. These Artura wheels are offered as options on XK Portfolio and (in run-flat form) on XKR. Another all-new wheel, the 19-inch ten-spoke Tamana design, becomes standard equipment on XKR and is unique to the model.
A new 19-inch mini-spare is introduced as standard equipment for the XKR, while the weight and space-saving Instant Mobility System still takes the place of a spare wheel on the XK Portfolio.
Distinctive 20-inch wheels continue as a very sporty option across the new XK range - emphasizing the cars’ sporting dynamics and assertive, muscular looks. The new designs include two 20-inch wheels: the twin-five-spoke Kalimnos is optional for XK Portfolio and XKR while the twin-seven-spoke R Performance Nevis design is a unique option for the XKR, and an addition to the wheel range.
With the recent addition of new options Claret, Spectrum Blue, and Kyanite Blue, the stunning exterior color range for the new XK Portfolio and XKR is extended to 15 colors; two of which - Salsa and Kyanite Blue - are reserved exclusively for XKR.
In true, contemporary Jaguar fashion, a great deal of useful and intuitive technology is controlled by the clear and elegant seven-inch Touch-screen in the center console – which is standard on all models. On the new XK Portfolio and XKR, the Touch-screen provides access and control for the Climate Control and Audio systems, for the Satellite Navigation System, for Bluetooth mobile connectivity and for Jaguar’s Portable Audio Interface – which are all standard equipment. The satellite navigation system offers DVD mapping, postcode entry and a traffic message channel. The Portable Audio Interface offers iPod connectivity, and the connection of other storage devices through a USB port, to the in-car sound system, with full Touch-screen control.
The audio system options for the new XK range include available HD Radio, single-slot or multi-disc CD changers and either Jaguar Premium Sound or the ultimate, high-end Bowers & Wilkins system. The Bowers & Wilkins option is a 525-watt system with Dolby® ProLogic®II Surround Sound, three-channel stereo with unique amplifier, Kevlar mid-range speakers with high output and low distortion and specially designed aluminum tweeters.
For the North American market, Digital Radio options are available such as HD radio in the States, and SDARS satellite radio in both the States and Canada.
Ease of ownership
For all their performance and luxury, the new XK Portfolio and XKR are designed to be totally dependable cars to live with. Both naturally aspirated and supercharged versions of the new 5.0-liter AJ-V8 Gen III engine offer extended service intervals – now at one year or 15,000 miles rather than 10,000. All new XKs now feature oil quality and brake pad wear indicators, allowing those critical areas to be easily monitored on a regular basis by the driver. And in the event of an accident, bolt-on front and rear sections to help minimize repair costs.
“The XK has always been an exceptional sports car. Now, it has evolved into something even more exhilarating, combining Jaguar’s legendary performance, new advanced technologies and crafted luxury to create a sports car without parallel.” Russ Varney, Chief Programme Engineer, XK Series