Concepts and prototypes : Jaguar XF

Codenamed X250, the XF was originally planned as an aluminium monocoque, like the current XJ. However, Jaguar needed the car on the market as quickly as possible, and so it continues with a steel body featuring some aluminium panels.

To save cash and time, Jaguar has overhauled the old S-type’s DEW98 platform, a Lincoln hand-me-down that took some serious mid-life re-engineering to make competitive with BMW and Mercedes. As a result, the new S-type hit the market 18 months earlier than if Jaguar had taken the all-aluminium route. Changes for the XF included a new rear suspension design, and as this packaging mule shows, more steel between the wheels to boost rear accommodation.


From retro to flamboyant…

Frontal styling was devised to link with XJ Series I from the earliest stages in the design process...

Frontal styling was devised to link with XJ Series I from the earliest stages in the design process…

The feline haunches are a Jaguar trademark, and were always going to be a part of the XF. The Maserati-like rear lamp clusters were a step too far, though...

The feline haunches are a Jaguar trademark, and were always going to be a part of the XF. The Maserati-like rear lamp clusters were a step too far, though…

Early proposal combines nicely sculpted flanks with stubby rear end...

Early proposal combines nicely sculpted flanks with stubby rear end…

Rear view of same model reveals the chrome strip across the bootlid is a feature that was always intended to be there...

Rear view of same model reveals the chrome strip across the bootlid is a feature that was always intended to be there…

S-TYPE grille was never going to make it on to the new car... but that didn't stop them trying it out...

S-TYPE grille was never going to make it on to the new car… but that didn’t stop them trying it out…

Another rejected rear end treatment reveals that Jaguar designers were keen to maintain a flowing style, but develop it away from the retro look of previous generations...

Another rejected rear end treatment reveals that Jaguar designers were keen to maintain a flowing style, but develop it away from the retro look of previous generations…

The S-TYPE proposal fully rendered... better than the XF?

The S-TYPE proposal fully rendered… better than the XF?

Slightly later full-size clay model combined XJ-style grille with X-TYPE body styling. Haunches are evident here...

Slightly later full-size clay model combined XJ-style grille with X-TYPE body styling. Haunches are evident here…


Moving to the XF

The design team wanted drama, as this sketch clearly demonstrates...

The design team wanted drama, as this sketch clearly demonstrates…

Signature XF styling - and the coupe-like roofline - are now in place...

Signature XF styling – and the coupe-like roofline – are now in place…

Aggressive wheels point to those on the upcoming XF-R model...

Aggressive wheels point to those on the upcoming XF-R model…

The definitive XF design being created in clay...

The definitive XF design being created in clay…

Keith Adams

About the Author:

Created www.austin-rover.co.uk in 2001 and watched it steadily grow into AROnline. Is the Editor of Classic Car Weekly, and has contributed to various motoring titles including Octane, Evo, Honest John, CAR magazine, Autocar, Diesel Car, Practical Performance Car, Performance French Car, Car Mechanics, Jaguar World Monthly, Classic Car Weekly, MG Enthusiast, Modern MINI, Practical Classics, Fifth Gear Website, and the the Motoring Independent... Likes 'conditionally challenged' motors and taking them on unfeasable adventures all across Europe.

10 Comments on "Concepts and prototypes : Jaguar XF"

Trackback | Comments RSS Feed

  1. frankie the 75 nut says:

    Looking suspiciously like a P5 second from bottom…

  2. Paul H says:

    My biggest concern about the XF is that its now nearly 6 years old with no replacement on the horizon. Good though the current car is, it was based on old S Type platform, is very heavy and lacks much of the technology that is considered the norm for mid size execs, particularly German ones. Being good is not enough when your up against Mercedes, BMW and Audi all of whom have relatively fresh models. I really hope Jaguar dont let the XF turn into a festering sore like a latter day Triumph Dolomite and keep the momentum going with a lightweight, modern replacement capturing the technology now appearing in the Range Rover. They need to do it soon.

    • Paul H says:

      18 months on and fortunately they have not and all new XF will be launched next week – and by all accounts it is modern and lightweight!

  3. christopher storey says:

    Which particular items of technology does it lack ? I have been a Mercedes owner for the past 28 years,SEC, S and SL and most recently CLK , but there is nothing in the present range which comes near to the XF in sophistication, and as for BMW , although the petrol engines are works of art , the rest of the spec is rather ordinary . Quite simply, the XF which I travel in fairly regularly as a passenger is the finest car ( particularly in quietness ) I have ever been in, and makes the XJ seem very ordinary indeed even if it does have al2 panels

  4. Will M says:

    There were XJ mules spotted recently, which could be housing the next XF running gear.
    The car is due to get slightly larger, with the new baby Jag slotting in underneath.

  5. alex scott says:

    picture 3 (x250dev_02) would have made a nice Rover 🙂 alex

  6. Slartybartfast says:

    You can really see Jaguars soul searching identity crisis in these images. Some look like big Chryslers others like Rovers. Thank goodness Callum and crew sorted it.

  7. J181 says:

    JLR have proven they are 100% on the ball with their cars and overall plan of where they want to be heading!

    What a stunning turn around so far with their range. Under Ford they were nothing but rebodied Fords for the most poart and buyers knew that. They were also not allowed to compete with fellow stablemates Aston Martin…

    Well times have changed and they are taking on the big boys at an impressive pace. In fact at no point in the last 40 years have Jaguar had so much freedom to get it right and getting right is exactly what they are doing so far.

    At no point prior to TATA Motors buying them did I ever look at their range and think ‘I would want one of those’… I do now though!

  8. didierz65 didierz65 says:

    What’s the teaser on the Jaguar website ? A new XF on the 24/03/2015? Is it a new model or a facelift to keep the old girl up to date and not being too overshadowed by her wee sister?

Have your say...