Jaguar is tossing their hat (presumably a British bowler hat) into the aluminum ring. At the recent Frankfurt auto show, the luxury auto manufacturer announced its plans to compete with mid-size BMW and Merecedes-Benz sedans. A big part of the conceptual design will be the industry’s first aluminum unibody for the segment. From autonews.com:
Jaguar claims the sedan will be the first aluminum unibody vehicle in the C and D segments.
The sedan and other variants off the platform will use a new-generation Jaguar Land Rover-developed four-cylinder engine. Jaguar plans gasoline and diesel versions of the high-output, fuel-efficient engines.
The small-displacement engines will be made in a new $776 million factory in Wolverhampton, England.
One of Jaguar’s major stumbling blocks in the United States has been its lack of smaller, fuel-efficient powerplants. A Ford-based, 2.0-liter 240-hp, turbocharged four-cylinder engine was made available in the XF sedan only last fall.
The new modular and scalable architecture, Jaguar said, is made of high-strength, lightweight aluminum that is extremely stiff and will enable high-volume production.
It also will allow for “competitive interior packaging,” a growing concern for luxury brands as they scale down vehicle size and weight to meet consumer preferences and fuel efficiency standards.
This comes on the heels of the company’s investment in a new British manufacturing plant as it ramps up production. However, it still doesn’t explain why its (fictional) early 1960s models failed to start at crucial times.