Jaguar's new F-Type roadster will be priced between
$139,000 for the entry level V6 to $202,300 for the range-topping V8.
The standard F-Type will come with automatic transmission as standard - no manual is offered - and Jaguar says its 250kW supercharged V6 will propel it from 0-100km/h in 5.3 seconds.
That compares with a price tag of $125,600 for the Boxster S manual (the PDK twin-clutch auto is $5995) which has 232kW and will complete the 0-100km/h sprint in a claimed 5.0 seconds in PDK auto form (or 4.8 seconds if fitted with the optional launch control system).
It also places the new Jaguar F-Type - seen as a spiritual successor to the legendary E-Type.
The F-Type S will cost from $171,400 and will get a 280kW supercharged V6, as well as bigger wheels, adaptive dynamics and an active muffler.
The top of the range V8 model has a significant price advantage over the 911 Cabriolet, which starts at $228,900. Its 364kW supercharged V8 also shades the Carrera and Carrera S, which put out 257kW and 294kW respectively.
But the price also puts it very close to Jaguar's XK convertible.
Jaguar hasn't gone into detail about exact specification, but brand manager Mark Eedle says the equipment list will be generous. Both cars will also come with three years' free servicing.
The brand has already taken 18 orders for the sports car, with buyers split 50-50 between the V6 and V8 models.
Jaguar has modest sales expectations for the car, budgeting for roughly 120 sales a year.
But Eedle says the new F-Type will provide the local operation with more than just additional sales volume.
"It will bring a lot to the brand. It's halo car that will bring people into the brand and open their eyes to our other offerings," he says.
Eedle says all three cars will come with various styling personalisation options.
"There are various trim options, with the opportunity to tailor the car to your individual tastes," he says.
The new model has been redesigned from the ground up with a new aluminium monocoque chassis in place of the more rugged "ladder and frame" offroader setup the old model shared with the Land Rover Discovery. The new model is up to 420kg lighter than its predecessor and features reworked suspension and steering as well as a range of sophisticated driver aids that include adaptive dampers, an active rear differential and torque vectoring for the first time.
The supercharged version of the new model is a full second quicker than the old one, completing the sprint from 0 to 100km/h in just 5.3 seconds.
Land Rover's global product marketing director, Finbar McFall, says the improved on-road ability and the flexibility of seven seats would make the car a more attractive proposition to people who may have considered a rival vehicle.
"It's dramatically more competitive than the car it's replacing," he says.
The changes are just as dramatic elsewhere on the car, with the most notable improvements including:
The chief program engineer for the Range Rover Sport, Stuart Frith, says the vehicle was designed alongside the Range Rover Vogue but 75 per cent of the components on the vehicle are unique. It is 149mm shorter and 55mm lower than the Vogue.
He says the main focus was on improving on-road driving manners.
"It's more agile, with greater body control and the ride comfort has been improved," he says.
"No expense was spared on the suspension system.
"It has more than half a metre of suspension travel but can still corner like a sports car."
A new anti-roll system means the car leans less in corners, while an optional "dynamic" mode alters the ride, body control, steering, transmission and throttle response.
The brake performance has also been improved thanks to the buffer weight savings.
Wheels range from 19 to 22 inches.
Inside, the Sport gets some of the features already available on the Vogue, including - on more expensive models - a 12.3 inch high resolution display for the instrument panel that can display different read outs depending on whether the car is being driven off-road or in a sportier setting. Dual-screen technology, which allows the passenger to watch television while not displaying it to the driver, is also available.
There are also changes to the vehicle's off-road systems. The Terrain Response system can now automatically select between five settings for different conditions.
There is now a choice of two different four-wheel-drive systems. One has a two-speed transfer case with a low range option that splits torque 50:50 front to rear, while another is lighter and has a single-speed transfer case with the torque split 42:58 front to rear.
"It's dramatically more competitive than the car it's replacing.
The company has conducted 100,000km of durability testing in China and an 8000km flat-out driving test at the famed Nurburgring circuit in Germany to ensure quality remains at a high standard.
The Range Rover Sport is due to arrive in Australia from November with prices expected to remain at similar levels to the current model.
3.0-litre V6 diesel, 190kW/600Nm; 3.0-litre V6 diesel, 215kW/600Nm; 4.4-litre V8 diesel, 250kW/700Nm; 3.0-litre supercharged V6 petrol, 250kW/450Nm; 5.0-litre supercharged V8 petrol 375kW/625Nm. No details yet on hybrid and four-cylinder engines.
Transmission: eight speed auto
Weight: from 2115kg to 2310kg
CO2 Emissions: from 194g/km to 298g/km
Acceleration: V8 petrol 5.3 sec, V6 petrol 7.2, V8 diesel, 6.9, V6 diesels 7.2 and 7.6.
Wading depth: 850mm
The XKR-S GT is capable of sprinting from 0-100km/h in just 4.2 seconds on its way to an electronically limited top speed of 300km/h.
Powered by a 404kW 5.0-litre supercharged V8, the XKR-S GT features a range of aerodynamic and performance upgrades developed by the company's specialist ETO engineering division.
Changes include a new front splitter, extended wheel arch spats and an underbody tray designed to improve airflow under the car.
A carbon fibre rear spoiler is designed to increase downforce and improve rear-end grip.
Jaguar says all of the changes are functional rather than cosmetic.
"The XKR-S GT has been designed purely by the laws of physics. It has been developed in the wind tunnel and on the racetrack with the sole aim of creating as much high-speed stability and rear-end downforce as possible. Nothing has been styled for the sake of it. It's been an exercise in efficiency and the result is a car that's raw, focused and devastatingly quick," says Jaguar design director Ian Callum.
Other changes include special race-tuned Eibach springs, forged alloy 20-inch wheels and Brembo carbon fibre brakes.
The company claims the car is capable of a lap time of 7 min 40 around the famous Nurburgring test track in Germany.
Designed as an alternative to the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG and Porsche 911 variants, the XKR-S GT will be a limited release special, with only 30 to be built initially for the United States and Canadian markets. It will come with a premium of about $35,000 over the standard XKR-S at about $174,000.
The move to offer the car only in the United States is an unusual one, but Jaguar's global director of product marketing, Steven de Ploey, says the program could expand to other markets.
"The biggest market for this car is the US. But we will organise a drive for the other markets and if there is an interest from the markets and the customers there's nothing stopping us from introducing the car in other areas."
He says the technology will also filter down into other cars.
Volvo has taken another step towards reducing the pedestrian road toll
in Australia, releasing a new hatchback with the world's first pedestrian
The airbag pops out from in front of the windscreen and acts as a buffer
between the pedestrian and the hard points of the car's engine and body.
The technology comes standard on the new V40 hatch, which costs just
$34,990. Last year, 189 pedestrians were killed on Australian roads, about 15
per cent of the national road toll. And while the overall road toll dropped
last year, pedestrian deaths rose by 11 per cent.
All four models in the V40 range receive the pedestrian airbag system,
as well as Volvo’s city-safe automatic braking program that can stop the car in
an emergency at speeds of up to 50km/h.
Volvo's vehicle line director for the V40, Hakan Abrahamsson, says the pedestrian airbag
allowed designers to create a safe car with a low nose and bonnet line. "We
achieved two things, a smart looking car and a very safe car," he says. "It
has a very fast silhouette. "As with the Lamborghini Aventador. Jaguar XJ,
Range Rover Vogue and Lexus LFA supercars, the V40 has an interactive
electronic display in place of a conventional dashboard. The digital dash can
be customised to display speed or fuel economy relay information from roadside
speed signs.It also gives turn-by-turn directions when fitted with optional
Volvo has imported the V40 with four engines, with a choice of petrol or
diesel power in both four- and five-cylinder layouts. The entry-level D2 diesel
has a 1.6-litre, four-cylinder engine with 84kW and 270Nm, while the 2.0-litre,
five-cylinder D4 diesel has much more punch with 130kW and 400Nm of go.
The smaller D2 has an official fuel figure of 4.2L/100km, while the five
cylinder diesel uses 4.9L/100km.The diesel engines are available with a choice
of six-speed manual or automatic transmissions, unlike the petrol pair which
are only available in two-pedal form. The V40 T4 has a turbocharged 2.0-litre,
five-cylinder engine with 132kW and 300Nm, while the grunty T5 has a
turbocharged 2.5-litre five-cylinder motor with outputs of 187kW and 360Nm. The
range-topping, $49,990 T5 R-Design has an overboost function that gives drivers
access to 400Nm of torque for short periods of time.
The V40 has a five-star crash safety rating and was singled out for
praise by the ANCAP crash authority this year as one of the safest cars on
sale. Volvo says the V40 range is more economical and more powerful than
comparable models from the Audi A3, BMW 1 Series and Mercedes-Benz A-Class.
The V40 comes with three years, or 60,000km in free scheduled servicing.
It is available in three trims, the base Kinetic, Luxury (with leather,
satellite navigation and an upgraded stereo) and the sporty R-Design, exclusive
to the T5. A $5000 driver assistance package brings a raft of features
including blind spot and lane departure warning systems.
Volvo V40 pricing (before dealer and on road costs):
D2 84kW Kinetic manual from $34,990
D4 130kW Kinetic manual from $39,990
D4 130kW Kinetic auto from $41,990
T4 132kW Kinetic from $41,990
T4 132kW Luxury from $45,990
T5 187kW R-Design from $49,990
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