Jaguar's ETO division, a little-known but intense group of specialty vehicle creators launched last year, has one-upped the XKR-S with this, the XKR-S GT. Track-tuned, but built for the street, this is likely the hottest version of the XK Coupe we'll see--at least in this generation.
The ETO, or Engineered to Order, division has equipped the 2014 Jaguar XKR-S GT with more than just some track-looking frippery; the car generates 320 pounds of down force with a carbon fiber front splitter, dive planes, extended wheel arch spats, rear wing, rear diffuser, and aluminum undertray.
Power comes from the familiar 5.0-liter supercharged V-8 engine tuned to 550 horspeower and 502 pound-feet of torque--the same figure you'll find in the new 2014 Jaguar XJR sharing the New York Auto Show stand with the XKR-S GT.
The combination in the XKR-S GT is good for 3.9 seconds to 60 mph and an electronically limited top speed of 186 mph. An active exhaust system reduces backpressure and opens up the V-8's soundtrack.
Reining in the XKR-S GT's substantial kinetic energy is a set of carbon ceramic brakes, 15.7-inches in diameter up front and 15.0 inches out back. Six-piston front calipers and four-piston rears clamp the high-tech discs. Jaguar says this is the first time for such a brake system on one of its production vehicles.
There are other tweaks to aid the XKR-S GT's track abilities: wider front track, more negative camber, revised bushings, and a faster steering ratio. Height-adjustable dampers with twin springs, and an increase in spring rate of 68 percent in the front and 25 percent in the rear further sharpen handling characteristics.
Riding on 20-inch wheels wrapped in 255/35 front and 305/30 rear Pirelli Corsa tires provide the grippy interface that completes the track-focused (but still road-legal) XKR-S GT package.
The car goes on sale this August at a starting price of $174,000.
(c) 2013, High Gear Media.