Jaguar Land Rover Eyeballing Bavarian V8s For Future Models

Mark Stevenson
by Mark Stevenson

After ridding itself of the limp carcass once known as Rover over 15 years ago, BMW — the former parent of Land Rover — looks like it might provide V8 motivation to future Land Rover and Jaguar models.

According to Automobile, BMW wants an engine partner in order to amortize development of an upcoming 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8, and Jaguar Land Rover could be that partner.

Jaguar Land Rover is doubling down on its new Ingenium family of inline, small-displacement engines. JLR will downsize the current crop of inline fours to create 1.5-liter three-cylinders and upsize them to spawn 3.0-liter inline sixes. Unfortunately, developing an inline-eight would be considerably difficult due to the amount of room needed for such an engine in an engine bay.

Enter BMW, which is currently developing a 500cc/cylinder 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8. The Bavarian automaker is itself downsizing engines to hit regulatory benchmarks, but it still needs a V8 for its upper-crust vehicles. Jaguar Land Rover, as it focuses more and more on developing its newly minted SVR sub-brand, could use BMW’s 4.0-liter V8 in place of its own AJ-V8-family supercharged 5.0 liter. The AJ-V8 engine family has existed in various guises since 1996.

Expect the new 4.0-liter V8 to develop between 450 and 600 horsepower, the same output as BMW’s current 4.4-liter V8, while drinking less dino juice.

[Image: © 2013 Alex Dykes/The Truth About Cars]

Mark Stevenson
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  • Big Al from Oz Big Al from Oz on Jul 25, 2016

    I like the idea of an small inline six in a British car. Its quite British. Why don't Tata/Rover use that modular 1.5 and make a 6 litre blown V12? Now that would be an engine to have. On a more serious note, we will gradually watch the demise of the V8. They are just to heavy and thirsty. Nice to have, but 80% of the world just don't need them as our societies have gotten used to. It really is almost irresponsible to have one nowadays. It's sad, but p!ssy three cylinder, four cylinder engines will prevail, with a sprinkling of V6 turbo fuel thirsty engines. V8s will be for luxury vehicles. For that kind of weight in a V8 you can have a diesel with as much torque and much better FE and in some instance near on the same horse power.

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    • Big Al from Oz Big Al from Oz on Jul 25, 2016

      derekson, My comment in relation to V8s is they will no longer be in affordable vehicles in the future.

  • La834 La834 on Jul 25, 2016

    Is JLR really giving any consideration to building an Ingenium straight-8? I can't think of any car or light truck that's used that configuration since, what, the '54 Packard? An inline 8 would certainly set any new car apart though. The old ones were renowned for their smoothness even compared to V8s, but not for their power. And given that inline sixes normally need to be mounted longitudally to fit, I think it would need either a long hood/bonnet or some intrusion into the passenger compartment.

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    • Lorenzo Lorenzo on Jul 25, 2016

      @JimZ That was the complaint about straight eights in the 1930s, when pistons were the size of 3-pound coffee cans (for those of you who remember when a 3-lb. can of coffee actually held 3-lb. of coffee). If they could make 'em work with coils, points and condensers, mechanical distributers, and downdraft carbs, they can make 'em work better with electronic ignition and direct fuel injection. With smaller pistons today, a 4.0L straight eight shouldn't be much longer than a GM 270 cid truck I6 from the '50s-'60s.

  • Corey Lewis Corey Lewis on Jul 25, 2016

    "JLR will downsize the current crop of inline fours to create 1.5-liter three-cylinders" There are zero JLR vehicles where this engine would be suitable, so I'm not sure what the point of this exercise is.

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    • Corey Lewis Corey Lewis on Jul 25, 2016

      @derekson Ah ha. That makes sense. The F-Pace even in base power format now is pretty beasty.

  • Andrew Andrew on Jul 25, 2016

    I'm not sure this is such a good idea. The 2003-2005 Range Rover had the BMW-sourced 4.4 liter V8 engine and anyone who takes a walk through any Range Rover owner's forum will quickly see what kind of problems this caused. Long story short, the splines on the output tube of the front differential were incredibly hard to line up properly with the splines on the input end of the driveshaft (or prop shaft if you're in the UK). This combined with the movement of the driveline during everyday use caused the splines to slowly wear down until one day, with absolutely zero warning, the splines could no longer handle the stress and they would strip. This causes an instant and horrific grinding noise that sounds a bit like what I imagine gravel being fed through a wood chipper might sound like. In most cases you can get the vehicle off to the side of the road but once you do, it isn't moving under its own power again. While in other cases, the front wheels actually lock up and this has caused rear-end crashes as would be understandable when the Range Rover in front of you goes from 75 mph to a dead stop almost instantly with no brake lights. Land Rover solved the issue for the 2006 model year with a new engine and a revised differential and driveshaft design using a more traditional U-joint coupling. I worked for a Land Rover dealership from late 06 through the middle of 07 and saw more RRs come in on tow trucks with this issue than I care to count. I also heard the grinding noise with my own ears and trust me, it was not pleasant. The parts department was packed with driveshafts and differentials that had their splines completely worn out and on many, you could see they had stripped completely.