Jaguar Wants Baby Crossover Placed Under The F-Pace
Crossovers are big business these days as automakers rake in profits from the hot-selling high-riders. Jaguar is no different as it prepares its first crossover, the F-Pace for production in the near future. However, Jaguar appears interested in a second crossover slotted under the F-Pace to help grow the portfolio.
“A family [of SUVs] is not confirmed but we are investigating it,” said Steven de Ploey, Jaguar’s brand director. “We have the architecture and capability with Land Rover to go left or right, up or down, but we’d only do it on two key attributes. The car has to be dynamically the most capable and it has to meet our design standards.”
Meeting those design standards is a big deal for the resurging automaker. Ploey added the crossover must perform as a Jaguar should, saying, “It has to be a Jaguar in design and performance, and it would be a challenge to do this. A challenge it might be, but one Jaguar Land Rover seems competent to accept. Just look at the Range Rover Sport SVR and its high-performance demeanor.
The other issue JLR must sort out is logistics. "You’d not just be competing with premium brands but high-end mainstream manufacturers, too. There are lots of other things we have to do before this, but we have opportunities and permission to play there,” Ploey said. In other words, JLR would likely have to invest in expanding its assembly centers and strengthening its supply chains before commencing production of a second crossover.
The last hurtle Ploey mentions is the vehicle architecture. “We’d need a different architecture. What we have is scalable, but that low? You’d really have to investigate taking it down.” Whatever the outcome, if Jaguar can make its crossover behave like the Range Rover Sport SVR, the automaker will have a grand slam.
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Why it matters
As mentioned above, crossovers are big-dollar profit makers. Sold in the right quantities – which is becoming rather easy thanks to a SUV-thirsty market – automakers can pad their coffers in short order. Sure, it’s odd to think of Jaguar selling a crossover, but the same was true for Porsche and BMW not so long ago. Those automakers have certainly shown how crossovers grow businesses.
For the enthusiast, large profits from SUVs and crossovers mean larger development budgets for sports cars. So yes, be happy Mr. F-Type owner; Jaguar might have the scratch to do something extra with the next generation of your favorite coupe and roadster.