BMW’s 3 Series has been the hands down the compact luxury leader since its introduction back in 1975. Competing luxury automakers have done their best to compete, but continue to fall short. Jaguar may soon reenter the ring with its X-Type replacement in a few years.
The British automaker recorded a healthy 12-percent sales increase in the United States last year, with its XF accounting for more than half of its 13,340 deliveries. While a nice improvement, the automaker says it needs a new vehicle that will increase its volume and help its image – and help it meet fuel economy standards.
"We need different models. We need lower priced models," Jaguar’s global brand director Adrian Hallmark told Automotive News. "We want to build elegant cars with great technology that give a sense of occasion and position us above that competition, where Jaguar should be."
The compact luxury segment is fiercely competitive, with BMW recording over 100,000 3 Series sales last year, and the Mercedes-Benz C-class and Audi A4 tallying 58,785 and 34,672 respectively. Jaguar’s poorly accepted Ford Mondeo-based X-type didn’t live up to sales expectations, but the automaker said the new car will be a vast departure from its previous compact offering.
Previous reports suggest Jaguar’s next compact vehicle may come in several shapes including a sedan, hatchback, and even a crossover variant. Jaguar recently noted that incorporating a crossover into its lineup was a high priority. The new crossover and forthcoming X-Type replacement will reportedly be based on the same architecture.
Unfortunately for those interested in the British compact, Jaguar says the new model is roughly four years away, should the automaker decide to go forth with the plan. Do you think there’s room for a compact Jaguar in the U.S. auto market, or are they doomed to have a repeat of the X-Type?