Jaguar has announced that its purpose-built steamroller of track records, the XE SV Project 8, will get a more road-friendly version that ditches that giant, draggy rear wing and adds back seats.
Many of the 300 XE SV Project 8s will be built to full track spec, with a roll hoop in place of the second-row seats, an adjustable aerodynamics splitter, and an equally adjustable rear wing. Jaguar announced Wednesday, however, that 15 of the Ian Callum-styled Project 8s will be built to Touring spec, meaning their back seats will be reinstalled, and the Shrinky-Pig 2000 will be fired at its rear wing, shriveling it down to a rear lip spoiler.
Outside of these changes, the Touring is largely identical to the standard Project 8 down to paint color—though that's in no way a denigration of this super sedan. Touring and Track Pack cars alike derive their power from a brutal 5.0-liter, supercharged V8 making 592 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque. Linked to the wheels via an eight-speed ZF automatic transmission and all-wheel-drive, the Project 8 Touring can catapult itself from zilch to 60 miles per hour in 3.3 seconds, and plow onward to an electronically limited top speed of 186 mph (300 kilometers per hour).
"Project 8 has received outstanding critical acclaim since its launch, demonstrating the Special Vehicle Operations team's ability to create a compact Jaguar sedan with supercar-rivaling performance," declared Engineering Director for Jaguar Special Vehicle Operations Jamal Hameedi, whom Jaguar-Land Rover poached from Ford Performance just over a year ago. "Touring specification extends the appeal of Project 8 to performance car enthusiasts and collectors who prefer a more discreet appearance, without compromising its driver-focused on-road dynamics."
Jaguar says that a few delimited Project 8s, capable of breaking 200 mph, are still available for order through its dealer network, though it makes no such promise for the Project 8 Touring. That implies that all 15 Touring-spec cars are already spoken for, so if this is your first time hearing about it, this is also your notice that you're not on JLR's list of favorite customers...Just like the rest of us.