According to Autocar in the UK, Jaguar Land Rover is still hard at work on series hybrid vehicles. Similar to the stance General Motors has taken with the 2011 Chevrolet Volt, Jaguar believes that the only real way electric vehicles can be made compatible with everyday life is to add a small range-extending gasoline-powered engine that's capable of keeping the batteries charged on the go.
Unlike GM, though, Jaguar has seen fit to contract its small engine work out to Lotus, which makes sense given the two British company's differing product specialties. Lotus has reportedly delivered a 1.2-liter three-cylinder engine that generates 35kW of power, which is carried – with a little help from a UK government grant or two – inside a new 2011 XJ sedan with a lithium ion battery pack.
Motive force comes courtesy of what Autocar believes is a 145kW (194 horsepower) electric motor with 295 pound-feet of torque. Performance specifications sound pretty good – though not quite as impressive as we might have imagined – assuming all of this is accurate, with a range of 600 miles, combined fuel economy of 47 miles per gallon (57 mpg UK) and carbon emissions of under 120 g/km. Top speed would reportedly come in at 112 miles per hour.
An unnamed source at Jaguar tells Autocar that the electric XJ handles quite well "because of the bulk that's removed from car when you strip out the conventional drivetrain." Future Range Rover models are also rumored to get a similar drivetrain.