Jaguar revealed the XE sedan in 2014 after a long string of teases that nearly drove us nuts. In the UK, the XE is ready for action, but folks in the U.S. have to wait until the 2017 Jaguar XE arrives. As we get nearer to the American release of the XE, our spy photographers caught a special version of the upcoming sedan in a parking lot. This model had a badge with an “E” on a light-blue background and no visible exhaust pipes. Our thoughts immediately turned to this being either a hybrid or a plug-in hybrid version of the XE.

With BMW already entrenched in the compact luxury hybrid sedan realm with the ActiveHybrid 3, and Mercedes about to dive in with the 2016 C350 Plug-In Hybrid, it was only a matter of time before Jag dipped its toes in. The question is, what type of hybrid is this? Is it a plug-in hybrid or a standard hybrid? Maybe it’s not a hybrid at all and is actually a full-electric version of the XE. I really don’t know.

We should start learning more as time goes on.

Continue reading to learn more about the Jaguar XE-E and what I think is under the hood.

  • 2018 Jaguar XE-E
  • Year:
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    275 (Est.)
  • Torque @ RPM:
    450 (Est.)
  • Displacement:
    2.0 L (Est.)
  • 0-60 time:
    6 sec. (Est.)
  • Top Speed:
    130 mph (Est.)
  • Price:
    50000 (Est.)
  • car segment:
  • car fuel:
  • body style:

Spy Shots

March 19, 2016 - First testing session

2018 Jaguar XE-E Exterior Spyshots
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2018 Jaguar XE-E Exterior Spyshots
- image 622943
2018 Jaguar XE-E Exterior Spyshots
- image 622944


2018 Jaguar XE-E Exterior Spyshots
- image 622943

From the outside, this test rig is little more than a standard XE. However, upon closer inspection, there are a few giveaways that this is something slightly different. First is the small “E” badge on a light-blue background on the rear of the vehicle. Secondly, there is a plastic piece that looks intentionally popped off the rear bumper. Could this be a makeshift hole to plug in the power cord? The final giveaway is the blue wire that loops from the cabin to under the hood. This could be nothing more than general monitoring equipment, but I have a feeling that this could be the wire for a makeshift battery-monitoring system.

Other than those modifications, this XE looks like a standard black Jag in dire need of a bath.


There are no good pictures of the interior of this electrified Jaguar, but chances are that it’ll carry the exact same features as the standard model, save for the monitoring system for the electric side of the equation.


This is where things get a little convoluted, as there are no reports of Jaguar planning to build a hybrid or electric XE, but this is clearly something of that nature. Carscoops did a little digging themselves, and when they ran a license plate check on this car, it came back as having a 2.0-liter diesel engine. However, the label on the windshield has an FEV ID, and “FEV” stands for “full electric vehicle.”

My best guess is that this is a plug-in hybrid with a 2.0-liter diesel engine backing it up. As Autoevolution points out, “FEV” is also the name of a company that has done work on both full-electric and hybrid vehicles, and the chances of Jag diving right into full electric without dabbling in the plug-in hybrid realm seems unlikely.

The other potential scenario is that this model is a hybrid that features a 2.0-liter diesel engine and the same 35 kW electric motor built into the transmission as the Range Rover Sport diesel hybrid has. According to Carscoops, when they ran the plates on these hybrid SUVs’ they came back with a diesel engine only, just like this XE-E.

More details will likely become available once we catch the XE-E out for a drive.


Pricing is an absolute mystery, but to remain competitive, this model will need to hang around the $50,000 mark.


BMW ActiveHybrid 3

2013 BMW ActiveHybrid3 Exterior
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There are not too many hybrids hanging out in the compact luxury sedan market, but one is the ActiveHybrid 3 from Bimmer. The ActiveHybrid 3 starts out at a whopping $50,150, and it doesn’t return outstanding fuel economy numbers at just 28 mpg combined – 3 mpg more than the standard 335i.

What you do get is a bump in power to 335 horsepower and 330 pound-feet of torque. This results in a 0-to-60 time of just 5.2 seconds – 0.1 seconds slower than the base 335i – and a 130-mph top speed. IS that extra 3 mpg combined really worth a $6,400 price hike?

Mercedes-Benz C350 Plug-In Hybrid

2016 Mercedes C350 Plug-In Hybrid High Resolution Exterior
- image 610330

The other hybrid in the compact luxury class is of the plug-in variety and it hails from Mercedes-Benz. I am talking about the upcoming 2016 C350 Plug-In Hybrid. There is no pricing available yet, but it will be available in the fall of 2015. I expect it to end up somewhere around $55,000.

This model comes with a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that produces 208 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. The electric motor adds 80 horses and 251 pound-feet of twist. This boils down to a total output of 275 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque. Sure, the Mercedes plug-in hybrid is a good bit slower than the BMW ActiveHybrid 3, at 5.9 seconds to 60 mph, but its 20 miles of electric-only driving is sure to push the mpg-e well beyond the 28 mpg combined of its Bimmer rival.


2018 Jaguar XE-E Exterior Spyshots
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It’s really hard to pinpoint exactly what Jaguar is testing here, but it is pretty clear that it is some sort of electrified XE. This is the logical step in the life of the XE, but it sticks that it has a diesel drivetrain. It’s not that I hate diesels – it’s the exact opposite, in fact – it’s the fact that there is no chance this model will arrive in the U.S. any time soon due to its diesel engine.

  • Leave it
    • Likely not a speed demon
    • Diesel engine kills its chances in America
    • So many questions left unanswered
Justin Cupler
Justin Cupler
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