News : Jaguar ‘Hyperbrid’ cancelled!

Carole Nash Classic Insurance Specialists

Andrew Elphick

Some cunning investigation has procured the (rather unsurprising news) that Jaguar does not intend to to put its C-X75 supercar into production. In echoes of 1988’s British motor show XJ220 launch, the C-X75 had already ‘downsized’ from Gas turbine propulsion to a four-cylinder multi-charged engine (the XJ220 show car famously boasted four-wheel drive and a V12 in design; then a 6R4-esque V6 and two-wheel drive followed in to production).

The news that Jaguar will complete a handful of prototypes and then sell them off is unprecedented – certainly in Jaguar’s recent history. In years to come, will it become the gilt-edged investment, like the C-, D-type or XK-SS?

Autocar‘s scoop report with global brand director Adrian Hallmark is reproduced as follows:

The Jaguar C-X75 supercar has been axed. Global brand director Adrian Hallmark confirmed that the decision not to put the radical hybrid into production had been taken due to the current global economic crisis. Five working prototypes will continue to be developed until next May. Up to three of these will then be sold at auction, while one will go into a future Jaguar museum and the other will be kept by Jaguar for running demonstrations.

‘We feel we could make the car work, but looking at the global austerity measures in place now, it seems the wrong time to launch an £800,000 to £1 million supercar,’ said Hallmark. ‘This is backed up by other products from us that people are screaming out for.’

The C-X75 was first revealed as a concept at the Paris motor show in 2010. Its hybrid drivetrain included a pair of gas turbines to power the car once charge from the four electric motors, one mounted at each wheel, had expired. In May 2011 Jaguar confirmed the C-X75, which features the firm’s first bonded carbonfibre chassis using Williams F1 expertise, had been signed off for production, albeit without the gas turbines.

The original drivetrain had been replaced with a turbocharged/supercharged 1.6-litre petrol engine and two electric motors, mounted at either end of the car, driving transaxles and powered by a liquid/air-cooled battery pack. The combined power figure of the hybrid drivetrain was 888bhp and combined torque 590lb ft. The C-X75 could crack 0-60mph in 2.8sec and promised 0-100mph in less than 6.0sec. An all-electric range of 60 miles was quoted.

Hallmark said the undisclosed investment in the C-X75 would not be wasted, and 60 per cent of its technology would filter through to future Jaguars. The hybrid technology, he said, could be used on a three-cylinder engine to give it the power of a six-cylinder engine. The C-X75’s sophisticated aerodynamics should also influence future Jaguars, while the high-pressure supercharger technology could be used on future performance Jaguars with four-cylinder engines.

Hallmark said around 100 expressions of interest had been taken in the C-X75, with the maximum number of cars to be built capped at 250. The C-X75’s carbonfibre chassis was developed with the Williams F1 team. Hallmark said the relationship with Williams would end in May when the project died, but he expected the pair to work again in the future.

Keith Adams

Keith Adams

Editor and creator AROnline at AROnline
Created www.austin-rover.co.uk in 2001 and built it up to become the world's foremost reference source for all things BMC, Leyland and Rover Group, before renaming it AROnline in 2007.

Is the Editor of the Parkers website and price guide, formerly editor of Classic Car Weekly, and launch editor/creator of Modern Classics magazine. Has contributed to various motoring titles including Octane, Practical Classics, Evo, Honest John, CAR magazine, Autocar, Pistonheads, Diesel Car, Practical Performance Car, Performance French Car, Car Mechanics, Jaguar World Monthly, MG Enthusiast, Modern MINI, Practical Classics, Fifth Gear Website, Radio 4, and the the Motoring Independent...

Likes 'conditionally challenged' motors and taking them on unfeasible adventures all across Europe.
Keith Adams

20 Comments

  1. A shame they couldn’t just launch a normal V8 powered version, without the gizmos, as it looks great, much more exciting than what’s coming out of McLaren.

  2. Hmmm, a 3 cylinder Jag… somehow I can’t see that one selling, but ho hum, would be interesting to see if it turns out to be a good concept.

  3. yeh, much as I’d like to have seen this as a full production model, to launch it at this moment would be a bit beyond reason when there are so many other projects that they need to get up and running. Effectively it’s those that will get the money rolling in and those that will essentially define the exact direction they are heading in….

    Nice concept but, again, shown off at the wrong time. Unlucky? Well no, not this time… Unlike with the XJ220 project, they can see what’s ahead of them and it won’t be looking any better anytime soon. At least it gives us a taster of what to expect. This does not mean to say this is the last of Jaguar innovation.

  4. @2 that’s based on the Lotus project I think (headless engine). Petrol only. It can be given a good exhaust note when carefully calibrated. Can sound like a straight 6!

  5. Lets hope a lot of this car is reflected in the next XF.

    There are so many supercars in the offing right now this is the most sensible decision.

  6. The C-X16 is truly innovative and very much in the true spirit of Jaguar, so it’s a shame it won’t enter production, however I can see their rationale making the decision they did.
    After spending so much money on it, it would be madness to not put the technology into use so it’s hardly a folly.
    If we’re going to compare it to the XJ220, which raised Jaguar’s game on a global level but could never be called a major seller the C-X16 makes even less of a case for itself as a production car.
    With such a strong range of cars at the moment Jag isn’t in need of a new halo car. I think money would be better invested in an X-Typle replacement or *shudders* an SUV or a crossover in terms what’s best for Jaguar as a company.

  7. Bigest crime is the ditching of the gas turbine, this really is the future of hybrids, as they can be very fuel efficent and with hybrid techology can be run at their most efficient speed consently. And they can be made to run on nearly anything that burns, even coal dust

  8. I only really looked into this car when it was on a Top Gear rerun on Dave recently.

    Looked good, as only concept cars can. Interior was flashy, though I wondered how reliable the moving wheel and pedals mechanism would be vs a movable seat.

    The gas turbine that can run on any fuel was a novelty that reminded me of the Mr Fusion from the Back to the Future films. As oil runs out or becomes more expensive, we can run it on chip fat, diesel, alcohol, anything flammable. Though I wonder how well the injectors etc. would handle the differing qualities of fuels?

  9. This is a mistake, as long as this car doesn’t lose a shed load of money, it still makes sense to produce it. It would a halo car, increasing the desirability of the brand. Which would help Jaguar charge a premium for its other cars.

  10. @8, Ford Prefect,

    That would be pretty amuzing, watching Jag trying to lauch a coal-dust powered supercar! The ultimate Steampunk supercar!

  11. A nice looking car, but canceling the project is only sensible in the circumstances. I’m sure it’s generated plenty of positive publicity along the way and the few cars that are auctioned will remain ultra desirable collector’s cars – so no harm done.

  12. This car is an indulgence,not a “halo”car whatever that means.Its expensive and unworkable,a bit like the expensive Tesla.
    Made with a V8 it would make sense.

  13. Shame, but to be honest I’d be more thrilled to see a cracking small saloon doing “an Evoque” for Jaguar, so let’s hope this decision really does bring that idea closer to reality.

  14. It was stupid idea in the forst place, only betterd by whoever decided that theere would be no Triumph acclaim Mk2, but a rover 200 instead

  15. 13. A halo car is something like an Audi Quattro. Lots of people thought that was a daft idea, a high performance 4 wheel drive car, but the boost it gave to the Audi brand was well worth the money.

    A successful high end supercar would ad prestige to the rest of the line up. Triumph is another example, the TR series sports cars made its more ordinary saloons more appealing.

  16. @ Francis Brett.

    Yup, bartelbe as kind of hit the nail on the head. I was thinking along the lines of what the Supra was to Toyota as well. Something that gives the whole range a glow (like the Quattro).

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