Click above for high-res gallery of the Jaguar XKR-S

Jaguar quietly trotted out its hottest XK to date, the XKR-S. Packing a 420-hp 4.2-liter V8 and sending power to the rear wheels through a six-speed automatic gearbox equipped with Jaguar's Sequential Shift system, the XKR-S can run to 60 in 5.2 seconds and on to a top speed of 174 mph, making it the fastest Jag since the XJ220 supercar.

But it's not all about motivation. The revised suspension features new springs, dampers, a larger rear anti-roll bar and a recalibrated CATS (Computer Active Technology Suspension), while an active exhaust, revised aerodynamic aids (including one funky but functional spoiler) and massive, 400mm (front) and 350mm (rear) Alcon R Performance brakes balance out the package.

The Jaguar XKR-S will be limited to only 200 cars in both left- and right-hand-drive, but those of us in the States will never get a taste – it's a Euro-only affair.

Related GalleryParis 2008: Jaguar XKR-S LIVE

Related GalleryJaguar XKR-S


PRESS RELEASE

JAGUAR XKR-S – THE ULTIMATE XK

The Jaguar XKR-S: a lightweight sports coupe that takes the Jaguar sports car experience to a new level. As the fastest production XK to date, it delivers a combination of high speed performance, dynamic excellence and crafted luxury that is unique to Jaguar.

At-a-Glance
  • The new XKR-S coupe is the fastest production XK to date, providing the Jaguar enthusiast with an even more driver-focused high speed performance experience
  • Limited to 200 cars – available only in Europe, in both right-hand and left-hand drive
  • The XKR-S is capable of 0-60mph (0-100kph) in 4.9 (5.2) seconds and has a maximum speed, electronically limited, of 174mph (280kph) – making it the fastest Jaguar since the XJ220 supercar
  • Revised suspension with bespoke springs, dampers, anti-roll bar and recalibrated Computer Active Technology Suspension (CATS) further improve the XKR's outstanding ride and handling balance
  • Exterior styling features revised front air-splitter and side sill-extensions, revised rear spoiler and rear bumper with unique diffuser panel and unique 20" lightweight Vortex alloy wheels
  • Ultimate Black metallic paint colour with contrasting finish to the grille, sills, side power vents and rear diffuser
  • Alcon R Performance braking system with red monobloc six-piston callipers and 400mm brake discs at the front, 350mm at the rear
  • Six-speed automatic transmission with Jaguar Sequential ShiftTM for ultra-quick manual gear shifts in milliseconds, using steering-wheel-mounted paddles
  • Active Exhaust System ensures refinement at cruising speed but purposeful V8 roar under hard acceleration
  • Strong, lightweight and exceptionally rigid all-aluminium body construction delivers excellent dynamic agility
  • The luxury sports interior features full soft-grain leather with twin-needle contrast stitching, adjustable seat bolsters, Piano Black veneer, Charcoal Alston luxury headliner plus the XKR's comprehensive standard specification
  • Bowers & Wilkins surround sound system, with 525W Premium audio, featuring low distortion Kevlar mid-range speakers and aluminium dome speakers, designed and tuned specifically for XK
  • In summary, the ultimate Jaguar XK and a perfect illustration of Jaguar's philosophy of building beautiful, fast cars.

The XKR-S coupe is the fastest production XK to date. Powered by Jaguar's acclaimed 4.2litre V8 supercharged engine, it has been developed for the true Jaguar enthusiast. It is faster and more agile than the XKR, taking the Jaguar sports car experience to a new level, whilst retaining the refined, dynamic excellence and crafted luxury that is unique to Jaguar.

Sharing the XKR's highly advanced lightweight aluminium body architecture, the high performance of the XKR-S is made totally accessible by the enormous reserves of the
4.2-litre all aluminium four-cam supercharged V8's 420bhp (SAE) and 560Nm of torque.

With recalibrated engine management, the XKR-S reaches an electronically limited top speed of 174mph (280kph) – 19mph (30kph) faster than the XKR. This additional performance is made accessible by improved aerodynamics (reduced drag and lift) and unique suspension set-up.

Sharing the XKR's class-leading six-speed sequential automatic transmission, the
XKR-S has exceptional refinement and the option of ultra-fast manual shifts controlled by steering wheel-mounted paddle shifts – with shift times measured in milliseconds to make this one of the fastest shifting transmissions in the world.

To match its increased performance, the XKR-S adopts the most powerful brakes on any Jaguar production model, plus extensive changes to its suspension and steering to provide further enhanced ride and handling characteristics without compromising comfort.

The high performance braking system for the XKR-S was developed by Jaguar's Special Vehicles team in partnership with British competition brake specialist Alcon, which supplies the stopping power for some of the fastest cars in the world, on both road and track. The brakes were perfected over thousands of miles of testing on some of Europe's most demanding roads, and by Jaguar's engineering team at the Nurburgring in Germany. The XKR-S Alcon R Performance braking system features 400mm diameter discs on the front and 350mm discs at the rear. Each disc is radially ventilated for maximum cooling and to resist fade even under the hardest use, and will perfectly match the XKR-S's increased top speed. The friction surfaces of each disc carry a series of crescent-shaped grooves that help clear water from the discs during wet weather and help to keep the brake pads clean at all times. The Alcon R performance brake package uses lightweight monobloc six-piston callipers at the front and four-piston callipers at the rear – each calliper finished in a distinctive red and carrying the R logo.

The XKR-S coupe's dynamic balance focuses on achieving an even more sporting character while retaining the XKR's supple ride comfort. Its blend of control and refinement begins with the extremely stiff all-aluminium body structure, and a re-tuning of the XKR's all-wishbone suspension. The XKR-S features new springs, new anti-roll bars and unique dampers. All the major suspension parameters are recalibrated, and the XKR-S uses Jaguar's proven Computer Active Technology Suspension (CATS) with unique tuning. It also uses a faster ratio steering rack, for quicker reactions and optimum feel.

The limited edition coupé in Ultimate Black is identified by the unique XKR-S badge on the rear of the car. The exterior of the XKR-S has been subtly enhanced to make it recognisably different without being overstated. Another significant element in the revised handling package is that the ride height of the XKR-S has been reduced by 10mm compared with that of the XKR, and the XKR-S sits on unique, lightweight 20-inch Vortex forged alloy wheels with bespoke tyres. That naturally makes the XKR-S look lower and even more sporting, but it has a number of other distinguishing details. It features a new front aerodynamic splitter, side sill extensions, revised rear spoiler and rear diffuser panel, with contrasting finishes to details such as the front mesh grille, power vents, sills and rear diffuser panel.

The XKR-S has an Active Exhaust System, which is specifically tuned to ensure quiet, refined high-speed cruising while producing a much more hard-edged and sporting V8 sound under hard acceleration – not over loud, but full of performance character.

While the mechanical specification and the exterior revisions are driven largely by performance and dynamic enhancement, the interior changes reflect Jaguar's vision of the XKR-S as an uncompromisingly luxurious sports car.

The full soft grain leather trim is finished in Charcoal with Ivory twin-needle contrast stitching, with leather wrapping the seats, instrument panel top, centre console, inner door panels and rear side panels. This is complemented by Piano Black veneer, Charcoal Alston luxury headlining, plus a revised instrument cluster - calibrated to accommodate the higher top speed - with XKR-S branding. The contrast-stitched leather trimmed steering wheel, alloy and leather gear selector with alloy surround, bright aluminium pedals, and XKR-S branded head-restraints, tread-plates and carpet mats further set the tone for this very special interior.

Taking Jaguar's 525W Premium Audio system with Pro Logic II surround sound as a starting point, renowned premium British loudspeaker manufacturer Bowers & Wilkins have tuned a signature speaker system specifically for the cabin of the XKR-S. High output, low distortion Kevlar mid-range speakers and specially designed aluminium-dome tweeters deliver superb mid-range and extended high-frequency responses.

On sale in Summer 2008 and limited to just 200 cars in European markets only, the XKR-S is an even more driver-focused sports grand tourer than the XKR.