The 2011 Frankfurt Auto Show is still over a month away, but automakers are beginning to feed information to the press to draw in visitors. One such semi-confirmed rumor is this: Jaguar is expected to show a new sports car concept in Frankfurt, and that car is said to form the highlight of Jaguar’s exhibit at the show. While Jaguar steadfastly refused to either confirm or deny rumors, it’s likely that the new car will be a smaller, less expensive alternative to the current Jaguar XK.
To grow sales, Jaguar has long wanted a car that could compete with the likes of the Porsche Boxster or the Infiniti G37 Convertible. If British auto magazine Autocar is correct, the car that Jaguar is showing at Frankfurt has been in development for quite some time, and “will blow the rest of the industry away” when it is revealed.
Rumored to be called the Jaguar XE, the car will likely use a V-6 engine with twin sequential turbochargers. Horsepower or performance numbers are anyone’s guess, but to make a big enough wave in the industry, the XE would need to cost less than the Porsche Boxster while providing noticeably better acceleration, braking and handling. That’s a tall order, especially when you’re comparing a front-engine, rear drive car to a mid-engine, rear drive car that’s known to be among the world’s best-handling.
Jaguar’s own official statement on the matter is typically British, with a company spokesman saying simply, “Jaguar has bold plans for the future, the next stage of which will be revealed at the Frankfurt show. We are likely to have a concept car to announce there.”
In other words, look for the revolutionary new Jaguar XE to debut in concept form at next month’s Frankfurt Auto Show.