…to rival the German trio of BMW, Benz and Audi.
The Tata-owned, British-based manufacturer has a bright future according to ebullient executives, looking to new models and new segments to conquer. The CX-75 supercar unveiled last year will be tomorrow's flagship but there is talk too of a possible SUV, perhaps a wagon based on the XF and broad hints of a two-seat sports machine to revive memories of the E-Type.
And with the E-Type celebrating its 50th anniversary, there were plenty of Jaguars from across the ages plus Jaguar bosses talking up the future at this year's Goodwood Festival of Speed in England. Tata Motors chief executive Carl-Peter Forster says demand for the iconic British marque is growing, thanks to the enthusiasm and passion of the Jaguar team plus financial backing from its Indian owners. Forster believes the new 2.2 litre diesel XF sedan highlights the company's resolve to find new markets and its commitment to both Jaguar and Land Rover.
"We (Tata) have agreed to double the annual investment in new product over the past couple of years," Forster said at Goodwood. "Any kind of cash we generate we are pouring back into the business." Forster suggested Tata's approach, and the resultant freedom now offered the likes of designer Ian Callum, should silence those who criticised Tata's 2008 takeover of the two British marques. But while Tata would like to see Jaguar as the world's number four premium brand the push would not be about volume.
"We want to be different and we can afford to be different," Forster said.
"We see other premium brands caught up in a race to see who's got the highest volume which I don't find is a particular viable message to customers.
"We think the good message is to make great cars, to create great cars with charisma and perhaps different to the other premium brands." He said Jaguar would be expanding its product line up, adding new powertrains plus 'some extraordinary stuff like the CX-75 because we would like to demonstrate the capability of the team'. Among the problematic advances would be creating efficient powertrains and more sustainable motoring while retaining the brand's emotions. "But the more we are working on this, the mroe confident we are that we can deliver such product," Forster said.