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Jaguar XJ hybrid electric in works

For Jaguar, the 120 gram per kilometre CO2 fleet limit that becomes effective from January 1, 2012 will be difficult but – thanks to the diesel and micro-hybrid models of sister company Land Rover – not impossible.

But that hasn't stopped Jaguar developing its own low-emission answers. At the launch this week of the Jaguar XJ, project chief engineer Andy Dobson said trials were continuing on a new XJ car with a three-cylinder petrol engine driving a generator that powers electric motors.

Mr Dobson said hybrid Jaguars would be the first low-emission models to be launched and expected delivery in 2012. "We see a better future in starting with hybrids and perhaps later into full electric cars," he said. "I don’t see hydrogen or ethanol as being fuels with the best answers. But a move into stop-start technology, hybrid technology and electric vehicles offer better solutions for us."

Jaguar sees itself as already making inroads into reducing fuel use and CO2 emissions by using the light weight benefits of an all-alloy construction in its latest XJ saloon. It has not dismissed using the same body material for the next generation XF model which is currently predominantly made of steel.

Mr Dobson said Jaguar was using expertise for its electric and hybrid future both from in-house development and through aligning itself with specialist suppliers. Now owned by Tata of India, Jaguar can no longer use the technology of its former owner, Ford.