I drove the Jaguar XE Challenge eight, a wild $188,000 British muscle sedan — here is what it was like
- The Jaguar XE SV Challenge eight is a really particular British muscle automotive, produced in a restricted run of 300 vehicles, promoting for practically $200,000.
- It has a 5.Zero-liter, supercharged V8 that makes near 600 horsepower and may propel the automotive from Zero-60mph in three.three seconds, with a high velocity of 200 mph.
- I can vouch for the Zero-60 time, however not the highest velocity. And there is not any doubt that the Jag’s V8 creates a joyful noise.
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Once we consider British vehicles, the long-lasting ones, the thoughts turns to peppy roadsters and plush Rolls-Royce saloons. True, the historical past of uncooked English energy was written by marques like Bentley, and lately, McLaren is not any slouch.
However in relation to a really giant engine sending a automotive very quick in a more-or-less straight line, the Brits way back ceded mindshare to its former colonies and their Yankee muscle.
Muscle vehicles are made by Chevy, Ford, and Dodge. The idea is brutal and easy: large motor, loud noise, rear wheel drive, tire smoke, hellacious linear velocity. European vehicles, in the meantime, can go round corners.
That cliché form of overlooks the truth that the muscle-car method is not precisely top-secret. Because of this Mercedes and BMW and Audi can produce what by the specs resemble muscle vehicles. What the Germans have finished, the Anglo-Saxons can even do.
This notion was lately pushed house for me when Jaguar let me borrow an XE SV sedan, Challenge eight version. Value? $188,495. Manufacturing run? Not more than 300 worldwide, Jag stated again in 2017 when the corporate unleashed the uncommon beast.
I fairly favored the Jag XE, and the Challenge eight, from Jaguar Land Rover’s Particular Automobile Operations (SVO) wizards, certain seemed good on paper — however it additionally seemed intimidating. Was I prepared for unbridled British sinew? Learn on to seek out out.
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The Jaguar XE SV Challenge eight was unveiled in 2017, in reference to the annual costume drama-speedapalooza-vintage-throwback-hootenanny that’s the Goodwood Pageant.
The XE SV Challenge has “SHOW CAR” written throughout it, so I used to be a bit shocked when Jaguar stated I may seize the automobile for a couple of days. The colourful blue paint job made the automotive stand out in my driveway.
My tester got here bedecked in some leaping feline livery stickers. It additionally had racing stripes, a low-slung carbon-fiber entrance splitter, racing-spec Michelin tires, and …
… An adjustable rear carbon-fiber spoiler.
The entire level of the Jaguar XE SV Challenge eight is to take what begins out as a luxurious four-door and up the ante so many occasions that you’ve got a ferocious monitor warrior on your arms. Charmingly, Jag truly requested me if I would have plans to trace this machine (I did not).
But when I had, I may have savored the candy symphony of a 5.Zero-liter supercharged V8 engine that edges proper as much as 600 horsepower, with 519 pound-feet of torque, all piped by way of quick-shifting eight-speed automated (with guide mode and paddles) to the Challenge eight’s surefooted all-wheel-drive system.
And I may have sampled all these issues at their restrict, or at the least on the restrict of my high-performance-driving capabilities.
In fact, though now we have examined vehicles on racetracks, we do not do it off the cuff. So I needed to make do with tooling across the New Jersey suburbs within the Challenge eight. That was it is personal sort of enjoyable. I did get in a couple of runs to New Jersey lake nation, the place I loved the staggering energy and bonkers acceleration of the machine: Zero-60 mph in simply over three seconds, with a high velocity on the market on the horizon of 200 mph.
The Jaguar XE SV Challenge eight is a super-sedan all proper, however the four-door platform implies that one can convey three passengers — and replenish on groceries for per week!
Ultimately, I richly loved my time with the Jaguar XE SV Challenge eight, however I additionally endured a revelation.
I am not totally certain what is going on on with me, however across the time I examined the brand new BMW M5, one other magnificent super-sport sedan, I began to bitter a bit on large horsepower. Do not get me flawed — the Jaguar XE SV Challenge is one thing near pure pleasure while you lower it free, particularly within the full-on monitor mode that maximizes the lusty exhaust be aware.
On one drive, I needed to continuously examine myself as I rocketed to the authorized velocity restrict and felt the Jag champing on the bit for extra, extra, extra.
My 13-year-old son was unimpressed with my restraint and declared that the Challenge eight would activate his occasionally visited outlaw facet.
“If I had this automotive,” he opined, “I might go to some highway in California away from the whole lot and simply velocity.”
An comprehensible dream — and one which, in its on a regular basis impracticality, highlights the issue of vehicles such because the Challenge eight.
You actually cannot ever drive them as they had been meant to be pushed, which is to say quick and laborious and with out regret.
An increasing number of lately, though I love what engineers can wring out of 100-year-old internal-combustion expertise and 4 tires manufactured from rubber — with no lack of carbon fiber thrown in — I would like my sports activities vehicles to be, you realize, sporty.
I imply, in that sense, one thing like a 332hp Nissan 370Z, with a straight V6, is loads of vehicle. And actually, the sub-200hp Mazda Miata is loads of experience. If you’re beneath 350hp, you may get into all of it on public roads and never fear about blue lights or a untimely exit from our realm.
Clearly, should you drop near $200,000 on the Jag Challenge eight, good on ya!
However I would personally save many 1000’s and purchase a automotive that I can drive totally. Though to be sincere, I had a wonderfully grand time chugging alongside at 25 mph within the Challenge eight, listening to its British muscle-car accent and never needing to drop the hammer.
Ultimately, who wants velocity, I assume?