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Jaguar’s Planned Return to Glory Focuses Hard On Wealthy Americans

The brand thinks that by moving into more expensive territory it can tap into the wealth of "20 million millionaires."
Jaguar

Jaguar wants to focus on the United States, move up-market, and tap the wealth of millionaires. Its parent, JLR, thinks this will be key to the brand’s success in the age of electrification. It sounds very similar to other brands like Mercedes and Mazda, who want to move away from the high-volume, low-profit game they’ve been playing for years. It’s not an impossible task, but it’s not easy, especially for a brand under the JLR umbrella.

The latter conglomerate is currently restructuring to move away from some of its existing brands. Jaguar, unlike Land Rover, escaped from this reorganization relatively unscathed. The only problem is that the brand’s current lineup isn’t exactly future-facing, and luxury automakers are going to struggle to differentiate themselves as BEVs become the norm for most. As we’ve written before, heritage isn’t going to cut it.

JLR’s creative new logo. JLR

Jaguar’s only EV, the I-Pace, is an awkward-looking machine with a short range for its price. It’s been on sale for five years with no electric stablemates joining it. The rest of the brand’s small lineup consists of two SUVs, a sports car, and the aging XF sedan. Do all of these cars have to be thrown out? Probably.

Speaking of the brand’s position in Automotive News, chief executive Adrian Mardell doesn’t inspire much confidence. He points to past success in the United States under Ford’s ownership as evidence that the Jaguar’s new direction will succeed. However, he also notes that these same bright spots are now “lost within Ford Motor Company data.”

Jaguar

He’s right when he says that American ownership forced compromises on the company that it may not have wanted to make. That said, its track record under the wing of Indian conglomerate Tata Motors hasn’t exactly been a thrilling ride. Sales have decreased nearly every year since 2017, according to data from CarSalesBase. Financials have been in a slump post-pandemic as well. It all points to an uphill battle to get the company back on its feet.

A new four-door, all-electric sedan is slated to be introduced in the U.K. soon, but whether it can hold a candle to competition from the likes of Lucid, Porsche, and others has yet to be seen. Sales of Porsche’s Taycan are also on the decline, Lucid is burning cash like an incinerator to get its Gravity SUV rolling, and sedan sales as a whole are shrinking. Jaguar, as previously mentioned, has already offered an electric crossover for years. The easy route didn’t work.

Chief Creative Officer Gerry McGovern also says the new sedan, from a design perspective, will not be loved by all. Right off the bat. The brand’s future offerings will “shock [and] be fearless.”

It might be a long decade for Jaguar.

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