Chalk another sedan’s death up to the relentless march of SUVs and crossovers.

As reported by industry publication Autocar, Jaguar will halt production of its XJ large sedan in July, after nearly a decade on the market.

The supercharged saloon was a looker when first introduced, and continued to retain a measure of visual gravitas through its mid-cycle refresh in 2015.

Still, in a market where crossovers are king and electrified rides are in vogue with a certain moneyed set of customers, it was perhaps inevitable the next XJ would be quite different than today’s machine.

Yes, Virginia, there will apparently be another XJ. Autocar reports Jag confirmed to them that the brand intends “to continue the XJ nameplate” but, predictably, was mum on details.

There has been plenty of speculation Jag will put the model name on a coupe-like sedan, albeit one propelled solely by electrons. Could it be a legitimate competitor to the Tesla Model S?

It’s not like the company is bereft of electrified technology, after all. The confusingly named I-Pace crossover (the E-Pace is gasoline-powered, remember) features a 90-kWh battery pack and twin electric motors pushing out a combined 400 horsepower.

Sculpting a sedan(ish) shape to fit on top of the electrified architecture shouldn’t be too much of a challenge for the design and engineering teams.

Here at home, the XJ has never been a particularly strong seller, finding roughly a couple of hundred new owners each year since the dawn of time. The F-Pace crossover easily outsells it in this country by a margin of at least 10-to-one.

In recent years, Jag has been pushing a “British Villains” advertising campaign, a tongue-in-cheek promotion suggesting its cars are a slightly dastardly alternative to mainstream luxury sedans. With this shift in production, Bond’s nemesis will need to adjust to life in an all-wheel-drive crossover. At least there’ll be lots of cargo room for his weapons.

Source: Driving

May 30, 2019