Editors Pick Motoring

The Jaguar XE SV Project 8

Jaguar XE SV Project 8

Every marque worth the name has its own ultra-performance sector. For Mercedes it’s AMG, for McLaren its Special Operations and nowadays for Aston Martin its AMR. In the case of Jaguar their Special Vehicle Operations sector has gone above and beyond what anyone could have expected.

Indeed it’s hard to equate the Project 8 with the original XE – or even most other Jaguars for that matter. Despite looking relatively similar at first glance the new car is a true supercar. A good deal of that has to do with the 600PS 5.0-litre supercharged V8; taken from track cars, this is the first time it’s been used in a road-legal Jaguar.


That’s obviously not the only technical advance that’s gone into the Project 8. Jaguar SVO have overhauled nearly every aspect of the car with performance-tuned enhancements including but not limited to: a carbon fibre bumper with enhanced cooling ducts, a vented carbon fibre bonnet, flared bodywork covering 20-inch forged aluminium alloy wheels, an adjustable front splitter, a flattened underbody, a rear carbon fibre bumper, a rear diffuser and an adjustable rear aerodynamic wing.

Jaguar XE SV Project 8

Jaguar XE SV Project 8

Forget a big cat; all those changes add up to the transformation of a compact sedan into a car that more speed-focused than a greyhound on steroids.

It also feels the part. Jaguars are by no means cheap cars, but they often can’t compare with the kind of quality you get in the prestige marques. The Project 8 changes that. The entire car is hand-assembled at the new £20 million SVO technical centre and, while I’m not about to suggest it matches Rolls-Royce levels of finishing, it’s certainly worth the £149,995 price tag. Probably more.

You’ll be able to see the Project 8 for the first time this weekend at the Goodwood Festival of Speed which is probably a good idea; with only 300 examples being built, it might be the only chance you actually get; www.jaguar.com

About the author

Sam Kessler

Legend has it that Sam’s first word was ‘escapement’ and, while he might have started that legend himself, he’s been in the watch world long enough that it makes little difference. As the editor of Oracle Time, he’s our leading man for all things horological – even if he does love yellow dials to a worrying degree. Owns a Pogue; doesn’t own an Oyster Perpetual. Yet.