Jaguar’s all-new, compact sports saloon, which goes on sale next summer, will be called the Jaguar X-TYPE, the company announced today. Previously known only by its engineering codename, X400, the four door X-TYPE is Jaguar’s first entrant in the highly competitive, fast growing compact saloon segment, where it will compete with the Mercedes Benz C class, Audi A4 and BMW 3 series.

A stylish, contemporary Jaguar with a performance spirit

For the first time on a Jaguar, X-TYPE features all-wheel drive as standard. This endows the X-TYPE with nimble and sporting driving dynamics, making it a car for driving enthusiasts. Effortless, refined performance comes from V6 engines in either 2.5-litre or 3.0-litre form, both derived from the AJ-V6 power train already successfully proven in the larger Jaguar S-TYPE saloon.

The performance spirit of the new X-TYPE is also reflected in its stylish, contemporary yet distinctive shape, unmistakably identifying it as a Jaguar. In the richly crafted interior, traditional materials blend with technological innovation. The overall feeling of sporting luxury is complemented by the practicality of the generously proportioned interior and boot space.

A new generation of Jaguar customers>

The new X-TYPE, positioned below Jaguar’s S-TYPE saloon range in both size and price, will attract a new generation of customers to the Jaguar marque.

“Customers for the X-TYPE typically will be younger than traditional Jaguar buyers with notably different needs. We also expect X-TYPE to attract far more female buyers,” said Jonathan Browning, Jaguar’s Managing Director. “They may be young professionals, perhaps starting a family, whose cars have to fulfil a multitude of different roles – lengthy motorway trips on business, energetic leisure activities with friends and even the weekly supermarket run. But these are people who require a car to have discernible style and individuality too. With its unique blend of style and practicality, the X-TYPE fulfils all these needs.”

X-TYPE to double Jaguar sales

The new X-TYPE establishes Jaguar as a four model line company, accelerating Jaguar’s transformation from a niche player into a major competitor in the premium car segment. The smaller, more affordable X-TYPE complements and extends Jaguar’s existing range of XJ Series and S-TYPE saloons and XK Series sports cars. Fuelled by the success of S-TYPE, Jaguar today is selling at record levels around the globe. This year, Jaguar plans to sell over 85,000 cars worldwide. When the new X-TYPE saloon range is in full production, it is expected to more than double Jaguar’s total sales.

On sale summer 2001

Designed and developed at Jaguar’s Whitley Engineering Centre in Coventry (England), the new Jaguar X-TYPE will be produced at Jaguar’s Halewood plant on Merseyside (England). The new plant is currently undergoing a major redevelopment programme in preparation for the start of production in the first quarter of next year. The new car goes on sale in the UK and the rest of Europe in the middle of next year, with other market launches following progressively during the second half of 2001.

Commenting on the new X-TYPE, Jonathan Browning said, “As the smallest and most affordable model in the range, the X-TYPE challenges existing perceptions about Jaguar. Appealing to a new generation of customers, the X-TYPE exemplifies Jaguar’s new performance spirit, offering a fresh, contemporary expression of Jaguar values in a compact, stylish sports saloon. With all-wheel drive as standard, the X-TYPE is also a car for the driving enthusiast.”

Details of the new Jaguar X-TYPE will be revealed early next year.