Jaguar XJ Super V8

The Jaguar XJ (X350) is a luxury car introduced as the successor of the XJ Mark II.

Like the Audi A8, the X350's chassis and body are constructed from aluminium. While some steel is used in places throughout the chassis, the X350 has a stressed aluminium monocoque/chassis similar in general design to a conventional steel structure, but with two differences; its underbody components are bonded together with aerospace-grade epoxy adhesives while around 3,200 self-piercing rivets are used to create the new XJ's unibody.

This differs from the A8's construction which uses an aluminium spaceframe to which aluminium panels are then attached. However, the aluminium Audi A8 weighs a comparatively high 1,830 kg (4,000 lb) (3.0 V6 TDi) compared to 1,539 kg (3,390 lb) of the (3.0 V6) XJ. On its own, the current XJ's bodyshell weighs about the same as a contemporary Mini Hatch. If the car were made of steel, it is estimated that it would weigh 40% more.

The new structure, and the need to continually improve the car's ride and handling, dictated a number of other mechanical changes. The third generation of Jaguar's rear suspension moved away from the previous double wishbone layout in favor of a more sophisticated multi-link arrangement.
Some of the styling features that distinguish the X350 from the previous XJ include the outer headlights, which are larger than the inner headlights, and wheels which are pushed out further towards the corners of the car, both like the original Mark I XJ. Also, the X350 dispenses with the separate "sixthlight" rear side window of its predecessor, reverting back to two side windows with quarterlight glasses mounted in the rear doors, like the Mark I. Moreover, beginning in 2004, changes have been made to the distinctive chrome side window frames of the XJ, where the use of chrome in the areas in between the front and back doors has been discontinued, in effect hiding the B-pillars. The curve in the rear door and rear screen resembles that of the Jaguar saloons of the 1950s and 1960s.

The Super V8, also known as the Daimler Super Eight, is the most expensive model, with the XJR second. The Super V8, which debuted in the 2003 model year in the new X350 body style, was essentially a long-wheelbase, supercharged XJ8 with the more luxurious Vanden Plas, or Daimler interior. Its primary competitor was the Mercedes-Benz S55 AMG. A distinctive wire mesh grille and chrome-finished side mirrors set the Super V8 and the XJR apart from the less expensive XJ saloons.

Source: Wikipedia, 2012

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