One of the chief criticisms leveled at the the Jaguar XJ after the sedan's last redesign was that it looked too much like the XJ of 1968... only without the sleekness. From a technical standpoint, Jaguar had done an admirable job of making the car both roomier and lighter thanks to a new aluminum structure, but the retro style was so similar to the outgoing model that it looked like a brand-new old car.

Fast-forward to July 2009, where Jaguar – now owned by India's Tata instead of Ford – will be bringing forth a new full-size sedan. Judging by both spy shots and the rumormill, the current car's retro looks will be dropped and the exterior will takes cues from the XF. The more upright greenhouse of today's XJ will be discarded in favor of a fastback roof-line, and power is expected to come from the new direct-injected 5.0-liter Gen-3 AJ-V8.

If reports are correct, the car's aluminum structure will be retained, albeit heavily re-worked with a rear suspension adapted from the XK coupe. Inside, the faddish rotary gear selector from the XF will be brought in, along with a thoroughly revised interior. In spite of its size, the new XJ is expected to weigh under 3,700 pounds, which should pair up very nicely with the 503-horsepower supercharged 5.0-liter in the new XJR.

[Source: AutoCar]