Jaguar has confirmed its F-type Project 7 concept car will go into production as a limited-run two-seat roadster hand-built by the newly formed Jaguar-Land Rover Special Operations (SVO) team.
A prototype identical to the production car was unveiled today at Goodwood Motor Circuit and will appear at the Festival of Speed later this week.
With the exception of a rollbar hoop behind the passenger’s head, the F-type Project 7 remains true to the concept car’s styling. The most obvious addition over the F-type roadster is the scooped fairing built into the rear deck – it’s inspired by the D-type Le Mans winners of the 1950s – while the Project 7 name is inspired by the seven Le Mans-winning cars Jaguar produced. A deeper front spoiler, aerodynamic bodykit and GT racing-style rear spoiler complete the look.
The Project 7 uses the same supercharged 5.0-litre V8 as the Jaguar F-type R Coupe, but it’s tuned to develop 567bhp and 501lb ft of torque. Power is delivered through the eight-speed Quickshift automatic, and 0-60mph takes just 3.8 seconds; it will be Jaguar’s fastest and most powerful production model to date.
Extensive use of lightweight materials means that it tips the scales at 80kg less than the F-type V8 S, at 1585kg. The upper front splitter, side skirts, rear diffuser and adjustable rear spoiler are all made from carbonfibre. There’s no folding fabric roof, either. Instead, a lightweight tube-framed Bimini roof clips onto the header rail when needed, or folds and stows in the boot when it’s not.
The Project 7 has a bespoke suspension set-up, and the front wheels are angled further inwards at the top to increase grip. A torque-vectoring system means that it can also brake the inside wheels to reduce understeer. Carbon-ceramic brakes are standard, too, to boost stopping power and reduce brake fade, while the roadster rides on 20-inch Storm alloy wheels. The are five exterior colours: red, white, blue, black and the green shown here - the white and black cars get grey roundells instead of white ones.
Inside, the Project 7 has diamond-pattern quilted leather bucket seats, carbonfibre dashboard inlays and an Alcantara steering wheel.
Paul Newsome, director of SVO who came to Jaguar from the Williams F1 team, said: 'Project 7 is a fully road-legal car and sets the benchmark for high-performance Jaguars. It was developed primarily on the race track, but has also been engineered for use on the road.'
Ian Callum, Jaguar's director of design, said: 'Project 7 is the perfect contemporary emdodiment of the D-type that inspired it. It's the first of what will be a great journey for us.'
Jaguar’s Special Operations division is tasked with building ‘halo’ cars for the most demanding customers. The company says the new roadster will be built as a limited run of up to 250 cars.
Prospective buyers will be able to see the production-spec car on display at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, which runs from June 27-29. Orders are now being taken and the first customer deliveries will begin in the summer of 2015.
Jaguar remains tight-lipped about the F-type Project 7's price, although it is believed it'll start at around £120,000. The full range of bespoke options are likely to push that up to beyond £150,000.