Competes with: Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Black Series, Audi R8 GT
Looks like: A track-tuned version of the Jaguar XKR coupe, which it is
Drivetrain: 5.0-liter supercharged V-8 making 550-hp and 502 lbs.-ft. of torque, six-speed automatic transmission
Hits dealerships: August 2013
The game of supercar one-upsmanship continues between the world's leading luxury automakers, and Jaguar has fired the latest shot with the unveiling of the new 2014 Jaguar XKR-S GT coupe. A track-ready but street-legal road racer, the new Jag builds off the super-fast and ultralight XKR-S coupe with the addition of a host of carbon fiber aerodynamic parts and suspension upgrades.
The most obvious changes are to the body — there's a new carbon fiber front air dam, "dive planes," wheel arch spats, rear wing and rear diffuser to increase downforce to a maximum of 320 pounds at the car's top speed of 186 mph. It's also got a carbon ceramic brake system and a race-derived, height-adjustable twin-spring suspension system. Jaguar has replaced the front and rear suspension arms, uprights, wheel bearings, bushings and the car's rear subframe as well.
There's also a new steering rack with a faster ratio, new 20-inch wheels, an active exhaust system and a new louvered hood to aid in engine cooling. Left alone is the 5.0-liter supercharged V-8 engine, making 550 horsepower and 502 pounds-feet of torque. Jaguar says it propels the XKR-S GT to 60 mph in just 3.9 seconds.
This is not purely a race car, however, as the interior is still very luxurious. The cockpit is finished in charcoal-and-red leather and suede cloth, with embroidered Jaguar and R-S GT scripts on the backrests. The XKR-S GT comes in any color you desire, provided you desire white with black racing stripes.
Production will be limited to just 30 examples for a few lucky North American buyers — 25 for the U.S., five for Canada. But at $174,000 (excluding destination), it is unlikely that they will be topping anyone's best-seller list anyway.