Engineering fine-tuning on the new Jaguar XE SV Project 8 has almost finished, ahead of production starting in June. Since its public debut at last July’s Goodwood Festival of Speed in England, the fastest-ever 4-door Jaguar has undergone numerous enhancements to ensure its legitimacy as ‘the fastest and most thrilling of all road-legal 4-door sedans’.

As they developed the car, the project team kept pushing boundaries. “The drive to do that is in our designers’ and engineers’ blood,” explained John Edwards, MD of Jaguar Land Rover Special Vehicle Operations.

The Project 8 is a 4-door car with genuine supercar performance. It has already set a new 4-door production car record around the Nurburgring’s Nordschleife last year – the ‘gold’ standard for all-round high performance. Its best lap was quicker than many supercars, and broke the old 4-door record by more than 10 seconds.

“With Project 8, we set out to deliver a fast, fun and engaging car that encourages you to explore its performance. Our lap record at the Nurburgring proves we have achieved that but now we believe we can go faster. We’re continually honing every functional aspect of the car, focusing on marginal gains to make it even quicker yet still accessible to drive,” said Mark Stanton, Special Vehicle Operations Director.

With a 600-ps version of Jaguar’s legendary supercharged 5.0-litre V8 engine, the Project 8 is the most powerful Jaguar road car to date.

No more than 300 of these limited-edition cars will be hand-assembled by Special Vehicle Operations at its Technical Centre in Coventry.

Two versions are available – a 4-seat version which contains all the motorsport technology that is the hallmark of Project 8, and a more hardcore 2-seat Track Pack version. The latter is 12.2 kgs lighter as unnecessary items are left out and it comes with carbonfibre racing seats and 4-point safety harnesses. In place of the back seat is a solid metal panel and Harness Retention Hoop, which helps boost torsional rigidity by 27% over the 4-seat version.

Unlike most high-performance production saloons, the Project 8, which has AWD, is packed with genuine motor racing technology. This includes, as standard, adjustable ride height, adjustable camber, adjustable front splitter and rear wing, a flat underbody, a differential oil cooler, track-perfect tyres as standard (the only option) on forged 20-inch wheels and – a production car first – F1-style ceramic wheel bearings.

Prices in the UK will start from £149,995 (equivalent to about RM805,000) with deliveries to begin during the third quarter of this year. It is the second Collector’s Edition Jaguar from Special Vehicle Operations, the first being the 2014 F-TYPE Project 7.

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