If Jaguar is serious about pitting its XF saloon against the BMW 5-series and Mercedes-Benz E-Class, it will have to expand its lineup beyond the current handful of models. Jaguar currently has two gaping holes in its XF range, an entry-level model to rival the 2.0L diesel BMW 5-series and Audi A6 in Europe, and a performance flagship to compete with the likes of the RS6, E63 and M5.
Officials are yet to green-light the launch of a new base model but we do know there’s a range-topping XF-R in the works. The new model was caught by spy photographers testing in the United States earlier this year and now a close-to-production prototype has been spied near Jaguar’s headquarters in the Britain.
Telltale signs that this is no ordinary model are a set of quad exhaust pipes, a discreet bootlid spoiler, and bigger air intakes on the front bumper. The car also sits lower thanks to a firmer suspension set-up and wider tires are housed within slightly flared fenders.
When it reaches showrooms early next year expect to see a brand new supercharged 5.0L V8 engine nestled under the hood, with output up around the 510hp (380kW) and 510lb-ft (690Nm) of torque. This same engine will appear in a new XKR-R, which has also been spied testing in prototype form recently.
The new XF-R is scheduled to make its world debut at the Detroit Auto Show in January next year.