Whether or Not It Sells, The Next Jaguar XJ At Least Looks the Part

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
whether or not it sells the next jaguar xj at least looks the part

When rumors began to spread that Jaguar was on the cusp of axing its long-running XJ (seen above) in favor of an electric car with a more versatile body, the purist in everyone no doubt squirmed at the thought. The XJ is meant to be a flagship sedan, and part of that role involves looking like one.

Jaguar did end up discontinuing the model. Now, as the XJ’s replacement draws near, we can at least inform you that it won’t look like a made-over Citroën C6 that hums.

Spy photos of a prototype XJ attacking some snow in Northern Europe are making the rounds, revealing a bonafide car, and one that appears quite large. Maybe they should call it the Mark X. Check out these pics at Motor1 for proof.

Riding atop the new MLA platform destined for several Jaguar Land Rover models, the next-gen XJ carries classic rear-drive proportions: long hood, flowing roofline, and a short deck. It seems that deck is part of a liftgate, given the seams in the car’s camouflage wrapping. If so, at least it still looks like a sedan.

JLR’s new architecture is said to underpin an upcoming J-Pace large crossover as well as the next-gen Range Rover. Able to accommodate fully electric propulsion as well as plug-in hybrid or mild hybrid powertrains, the exact range of Jaguar’s future XJ offerings is not known. It may simply be an EV, though that would see the model suffer in less environmentally stringent overseas markets (not that the XJ’s volume hadn’t already fallen to “hey look, I found one!” levels).

Speaking recently to Autocar, Jaguar design head Julian Thomson said the company is aiming for a “fabulous-looking thing” for people to “lust after.”

“We want to present something that challenges the norm, offer an alternative that makes it better and more engaging on all levels to own and to drive. That’s what we’re all about: the love of the car,” he said.

Interior volume should see a healthy increase, what with the car’s wider track and longer wheelbase. Power will also be substantial, though exactly what output to expect — and from how many motors — remains unclear. Unlike some German manufacturers, Jaguar managed to avoid range gripes with its I-Pace electric crossover, so those figures should be reasonable at the very least.

The next-gen Jaguar XJ launches later this year.

[Image: Jaguar Land Rover]

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  • Phreshone Phreshone on Mar 12, 2020

    But the people who have these in Metro NYC would tend to put lots of miles, if not be driven lots of miles on a weekly basis... LA and NYC as your prime market shouts HYBRID...

  • FAHRVERGNUGEN FAHRVERGNUGEN on Mar 12, 2020

    Nice looking car, but I thought Buick got out of building sedans.

    • Art Vandelay Art Vandelay on Mar 12, 2020

      This car...with an evolved 3800SC...mmmmmmm...and the church said Amen.

  • Fred Private equity is only concerned with making money. Not in content. The only way to deal with it, is to choose your sites wisely. Even that doesn't work out. Just look at AM/FM radio for a failing business model that is dominated by a few large corporations.
  • 3SpeedAutomatic Lots of dynamics here:[list][*]people are creatures of habit, they will stick with one or two web sites, one or two magazines, etc; and will only look at something different if recommended by others[/*][*]Generation Y & Z is not "car crazy" like Baby Boomers. We saw a car as freedom and still do. Today, most youth text or face call, and are focused on their cell phone. Some don't even leave the house with virtual learning[/*][*]New car/truck introductions are passé; COVID knocked a hole in car shows; spectacular vehicle introductions are history.[/*][*]I was in the market for a replacement vehicle, but got scared off by the current used and new prices. I'll wait another 12 to 18 months. By that time, the car I was interested in will be obsolete or no longer available. Therefore, no reason to research till the market calms down. [/*][*]the number of auto related web sites has ballooned in the last 10 to 15 years. However, there are a diminishing number of taps on their servers as the Baby Boomers and Gen X fall off the radar scope. [/*][/list]Based on the above, the whole auto publishing industry (magazine, web sites, catalogs, brochures, etc) is taking a hit. The loss of editors and writers is apparent in all of publishing. This is structural, no way around it.
  • Dukeisduke I still think the name Bzzzzzzzzzzt! would have been better.
  • Dukeisduke I subscribed to both Road & Track and Car and Driver for over 25 years, but it's been close to 20 years since I dropped both. I tried their digital versions with their reader software (can't remember the name now), but it wasn't the same. I let it lapse after a year.From what I've seen of R&T's print version, it's turned into more of a lifestyle thing like The Robb Report. I haven't seen an issue of C/D in a while.I enjoyed both magazines a lot when I was subscribing. R&T for the road tests (especially the April Fools road tests), used car reviews, historical articles, and columns like Peter Egan's Side Glances and Dennis Simanitis's Technical Correspondence. And C/D for the road tests and pithy commentary, and columns like Gordon Baxter's, and Jean Shepherd's (that goes way back to the early '70s).
  • Steve Biro It takes very clever or amusing content for me to sit through a video vehicle review. And most do not include that.Tim, you wrote :"Niche titles aren't dying because of a lack of interest from enthusiasts, but because of broader changes in the economics of media, at least in this author's opinion."You're right about the broader changes in economics. But the truth is that there IS a lack of interest from enthusiasts. Part of it is demographics. Young people coming up are generally not car and truck fans. That doesn't mean there are no young enthusiasts but the numbers are much smaller. And even those who consider themselves enthusiasts seem to have mixed feelings. Just take a look at Jalopnik.And then we come to the real problem: The vast majority of new vehicles coming out today are not interesting to enthusiasts, are not fun to drive and/or are just not affordable.You can argue that EVs are technically interesting and should create enthusiasm. But the truth is they are not fun to drive, don't work well enough yet for most people and are very expensive.EVs on the race track? Have you ever been to a Formula E race? Please.And even if we set EVs aside, the electronic nannies that are being forced on us pretty much preclude a satisfying driving experience in any brand-new vehicle, regardless of propulsion system. Sure, many consumers who view cars as transportation appliances may welcome this technology. But they are not enthusiasts. I don't know about you, but I and most car fans I know don't want smart phones on wheels.There is simply not that much of interest to write about. Car and Driver and Road & Track are dipping deeper into nostalgia and their archives as a result. R&T is big on sponsoring road trips for enthusiasts - which is a great idea. But only people with money to burn need apply.And then there is the problem of quality in automotive writing. As more experienced people are let go and more money is cut from publications, the quality and length of pieces keeps going down, leading to the inevitable self-fulfilling prophecy.Even the output on this site is sharply reduced from its peak. And the number of responses to posts seems a small fraction of what it used to be. This is my first comment since the site was recently relaunched. I don't expect to be making many in the future.Frankly Tim - and it gives me no pleasure to write this - but your post makes me feel as though the people running this site have run out of ideas and TTAC's days may be numbered.Cutbacks in automotive journalism are upsetting. But, until there is something exciting and fun to write about, they are going to continue. Perhaps automotive enthusiasm really was a 20th century phenomenon..
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