Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Ally Jaguar XE edges closer to launch

The new Jaguar XE, set to be powered the all-new Ingenium engine range, is the only car in the class to use an aluminium-intensive monocoque. Aluminium accounts for 75 per cent of structure.

This milestone in body engineering, the culmination of Jaguar’s world-leading expertise in high-volume production of aluminium vehicles, suggests the Jaguar XE should combine outstanding design with benchmark levels of ride and handling.

Lightweight construction is a core element of Jaguar’s DNA and Jaguar is at the cutting-edge of aluminium technology in the automotive industry.

The Jaguar XJ, XK and F-Type have all been developed using exceptionally stiff bonded and riveted aluminium structures: now the XE becomes the latest model to use this aerospace-inspired technology.  Jaguar hopes with XE it can challenge the prowess of the benchmark BMW’s 3-Series models, especially with XE's new powertrain and a claimed 75mile/gal fuel economy.

The weight reduction realised ensures that the XE is the most fuel-efficient Jaguar yet with fuel consumption and CO2 emissions on the NEDC combined cycle of over 75mile/gal and less than 100g/km respectively.

“The Jaguar XE body uses over 75% aluminium content, which far exceeds any other car in its class. This gives us a body structure with unrivalled low weight: it’s light but also immensely strong with extremely high levels of torsional stiffness. We’ve made sure our aluminium-intensive body structure exceeds all global safety standards without compromising on vehicle design or refinement,” said Dr Mark White, Jaguar’s Chief Technical Specialist; Body Complete.

Dr. White has been involved with Jaguar’s aluminium structural development since the inception of the aluminium-intensive XJ. The XJ pioneered self-piercing technology from Henrob and successive developments in bonded aluminium structures, the first work of this type originated at BL Technology in Gaydon where much of JaguarLandRover engineering is now based.

The structure delivers exceptional torsional stiffness, but the light but strong architecture also incorporates advanced suspension systems delivering unparalleled levels of ride quality, handling and steering.

The Jaguar XE is also the first car in the world make use of a new grade of high strength aluminium called RC 5754, developed specifically for the XE.

Dr. White has also been involved in past years with helping to pioneer other new aluminium alloys with Jaguar suppliers; alloys the company has used for the first time.

This new alloy features a high level of recycled material and makes a significant contribution to Jaguar’s goal of using 75 per cent recycled material by 2020.

Designed and engineered in the UK, the XE will be the first Jaguar to be manufactured at a new purpose-built production facility at the company’s Solihull plant in the West Midlands in the UK. This is the first time a Jaguar has been built in Solihull.

The new Ingenium four-cylinder engine range, dubbed Hotfire, will also provide cutting edge powertrain development. It is the first time in Jaguar’s history that it has designed and manufactured from a clean sheet a high-volume engine that has already challenged the company’s engineers and some of its suppliers.

The new Ingenium engine is also being being from a greenfield manufacturing facility. So this is the first time that an aluminium-structured car and a new engine range have been put together within JaguarLandRover is such high numbers.

Previously Jaguar relied on Ford Motor Company, but before that its engines were built in relatively low volumes compared with today’s levels of 300,000 a year.

The world premiere of the new Jaguar XE will be held in London on 8 September.

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