Exclusive: New Jaguar F-Type pulls in 1,000 deposits
More than 1,000 buyers have placed a deposit or have seriously expressed an interest in buying the Jaguar F-Type.
Jaguar Land Rover managing director Jeremy Hicks told Autoblog the car is important for the brand.
"We want this car to re-establish the Jaguar brand," said Hicks. "It is a big statement car and returns us to where our roots lie – sports cars."
Priced from £58,000, Jaguar is aggressively targeting the Porsche 911 and even though the sector is a relatively small one in terms of sales, the British manufacturer is hoping for great things.
"We have huge expectations around what this car can do for the brand," added Hicks. "It's not going to be massive in terms of volumes – you have to remember this is a small, niche sector we are operating in."
The F-Type, which arrives in the spring, is just the start of a product offensive from Jaguar. The XF Sportbrake (pictured below) will also be arriving soon and the manufacturer is exploring other volume sectors to tackle too.
"We are laying the foundations for growth and that means new cars in new segments," revealed Hicks. "The obvious place to go is down in the burgeoning area of the market. We need smaller cars, saloon cars and crossovers.
"We are certainly looking at the crossover market. You can't avoid the fact that the SUV market is growing and even though we are there with Land Rover – the definitive SUV maker – there is scope for Jaguar too."
Hicks explained JLR invests £2bn a year in R&D – he claims that's the most of any UK car manufacturer – and the team are looking at several options. A replacement for the X-Type is one.
"Jaguar has an opportunity to move down from the XF," he said. "A Mondeo-sized car. We were there before with the X-Type and did very well with it, so there are clues there for you.
"The problem with the X and S-Types, in my opinion, was that they were too retrospective. The F-Type isn't – it has lineage and clear DNA, but it's not a retro car. We need to keep an eye on that for our future products."
The new Range Rover is pulling in the punters too – JLR boss Hicks has confirmed the maker already has 1,400 orders just weeks after the car went on sale.