The boss of Jaguar product planning Steven De Ploey has confirmed that a next generation Jaguar XK coupe will be built, but the project to replace the seven year old current generation hasn’t yet begun.
Asked directly whether a new model is expected, De Ploey replied “yes”.
Having confirmed that work hasn’t yet started on the car, it means that the Jaguar XK won’t likely be replaced before 2016, which will make the current car ten years old.
Defending the long model cycle of the current generation, De Ploey argues “life cycles aren’t getting shorter, particularly for sports cars, they’re getting longer.
Compared with the year-younger Jaguar XF sedan, which the product boss claims has a life cycle largely dictated by the competitive set, “on the sports car side, you’ve got more flexibility playing with additional engines, playing with facelifts to keep the car fresh because the whole competitive set plays with long life cycles.”
It means that the XF “could be” replaced before the XK, despite the current generation being newer.
Before both current models are replaced, however, Jaguar will launch the F-Type coupe, the mention of which causes De Ploey to repond with “do you expect me to nod? It’s out there, you’ve seen it.”
An ostensibly fair question is whether the next generation XK coupe can co-exist with the F-Type coupe in the Jaguar range.
Yet De Ploey cites a 20-30 per cent lift in XK sales this year as partly thanks to the F-Type, which he claims draws people into showrooms, yet buyers leave with an XK due to its extra size and four-seat practicality.
“We’ve ended up with a lot of people leaving the door not with an F-Type but with an XK.
“[With the F-Type arrival] the XK can now truly play its role as a sports GT. The car intrinsically because of its size and weight can’t truly play that [proper sports car] role.”
He admits that the hardcore XKR-S was therefore an “experiment” designed as a stop-gap measure until the more overtly sporty F-Type arrive, further hinting that the next generation XK will further distance itself from the F-Type as a luxury-sports tourer.