A wild concept car shown at last year's Goodwood Festival of Speed has been confirmed for production ahead of this year's running of the event. The Jaguar F-Type Project 7, a wild speedster version of the F-Type shown last summer, will be built in a run of just 250 copies.
The Jaguar F-Type Project 7 is the first product from Jaguar Land Rover's new Special Operations team, which is tasked with crafting even more specialized versions of the company's projects. It is based on the all-aluminum Jaguar F-Type convertible, but its bodywork has been extensively modified. Carbon fiber is used for the new front splitter, the hood, side skirts, the decklid, and the rear spoiler. Compared to a standard Jaguar F-Type convertible, Project 7 is said to make 177 percent more downforce at its 186-mph top speed.
There is also a prominent fairing behind the driver's seat -- the concept had just seat but this car fits two occupants -- and the windshield has been made 1.2 inches shorter. Instead of the normal folding soft top, the Jaguar F-Type Project 7 comes with a "bimini" top that stores in the trunk when not in use. Paint choices are limited to Ultra Blue, Caldera Red, and British Racing Green, which come with white stripes and stickers; and Ultimate Black and Glacier White, which are offered with gray decals. Passengers sit in bucket seats that optionally can be equipped with four-point racing harnesses. Machined-aluminum shift paddles, an Alcantara-wrapped steering wheel, carbon-fiber trim, and a serialized plaque signed by Jaguar designer Ian Callum adorn the cabin.
Even More PotentThe Jaguar F-Type Project 7 marks the 60th anniversary of one of Jaguar's most celebrated sports cars, the original D-Type, and its name signifies the seven times Jaguar cars have won at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. It's only fitting, then, that the car offers serious performance. Under the hood is the same 5.0-liter supercharged V-8 as is available in other versions of the F-Type, but for the Project 7 it produces 567 hp and 502 lb-ft of torque -- an increase of 17 hp compared to the previous top F-Type, the R coupe.
The lack of a folding softtop and the abundance of carbon fiber helps keep the Jaguar F-Type Project 7's curb weight to 3494 pounds, or about 176 pounds lighter than an F-Type V8 S convertible, helping the car rocket to 60 mph in just 3.8 seconds.
To help the rest of the car keep up with the engine, the Special Operations team fitted new front suspension knuckles the adjust the tires' camber, stiffer anti-roll bars, stronger springs, and new shock absorbers. Twenty-inch wheels are standard, as are Jaguar's Carbon Ceramic Matrix brakes that feature 14.9-inch front discs. Also on board as standard are the F-Type's Active Sports Exhaust, Electronic Active Differential, and brake-based torque-vectoring.
The Jaguar F-Type Project 7 is fully road-legal and goes on sale in mid-2015. Although prices have yet to be announced, the fact that this car is limited to just 250 examples suggests a rather elevated sticker -- definitely somewhere north of the $99,925 asking price of the Jaguar F-Type R coupe, currently the priciest version of the car. Jaguar says that the North American version of the car will have several key differences from the Project 7 shown here; more details on the American models will be announced later this summer.