Jaguar, founded in 1922 in Blackpool, United Kingdom, is one of the most classic and sought after car manufacturers in the world. Jaguar's cars are known for their world-class luxury, exceptional driving and handling, and a sense of cool that feels meticulously crafted, yet effortless.
Over a near-century of operation, Jaguar has made millions of cars in dozens of designs and makes. Yet, with such a lineage, it can be difficult to narrow down Jaguar's world-class selection of automobiles to a slim greatest hits. That task has been performed today, so here are the 10 most amazing Jaguars ever made.
Jaguar's D-Type, which ran from 1954 to 1957, was a roadster that was Jaguar's leading sports car at the time. Looking back on the D-Type, one can't help but smile at its groundbreaking shape and sense of retro-futurism. The D-Type's body is its most interesting asset, appearing like a spaceship, ready to lift off.
The unique cockpit design of the car, often dubbed “the tub,” was a leap in aerodynamic technology that created a silhouette tied to Jaguar's classic body style. Though this car was only in production for three years, its legacy –– along with a hungry fan base –– is that of a classic and stylish car that points to a future we all wish would have come true.
The XJ is a quintessential part of British culture, especially its original run in the late 60s and early 70s. It's boxy yet elegant design gives it a timeless quality, being both a cultural artifact, and a piece of machinery people are still clamoring for. Unlike the D-Type though, the XJ model is still in production to this day, with Jaguar recently announcing an electric version.
Even the British Royal Family employs XJs as part of the official Royal Guard fleet, with a custom armored XJ used for transporting the UK's Prime Minister. The XJ is a lasting make for Jaguar, and it is extremely exciting to see it brought into the 21st century and beyond.
The Jaguar E-Type (otherwise known in North America as the Jaguar XK-E) was produced from 1961 to 1975, and was, for a time, one of the most powerful sports cars on the market. The E-Type consistently had more horsepower, faster acceleration from 0 to 60-miles per hour, and higher top speeds than most of its contemporaries.
With all available packages and care, the E-Type was an absolute monster, dominating the 1960s as the sports car to drive. And this is all excluding its looks, which still top best-designed car lists to this day. The E-Type is sexual, with its curvaceous body and long nose, not only perfectly encapsulating the time it was from, but still dropping jaws 50 years later.
It is hard to separate the C-Type from its history as a track car. The “C” in the car's name even stands for “Competition,” so the C-Type will always be tied to the classic days of racing. The car's shape evokes speed and movement, using the same fluid design that made Jaguar famous. It's long, almost shoe-like design, could have looked dated if it were not for the world-renowned craftsmanship which went into it, still appearing sexy and graceful to this day.
For the time, the C-Type was like a rocket, and its shape furthered this comparison. It stands not only as a symbol for the quest for speed which dominated the 1950's and 1960's but also as one of Jaguar's finest cars to date.
The XE, Jaguar's compact executive make that began production in 2015, stands as a very reasonable car in Jaguar's lineup. The XE strives for efficiency and comfort, perfect for young families and college students who are looking for a slice of luxury at a reasonable price.
The XE prides itself on its safety ratings, with a Euro NCAP rating of a perfect five stars, also performing extremely well on Thatcham's New Vehicle Security Rating (NVSR) that tests the likelihood of theft. However, the XE is not just made for daily driving, with additions and variants which can pack quite a punch on the track.
In the 21st century, Jaguar has expanded their brand to include more than just their classic luxury sports cars. In fact, this century has been a time for experimentation for Jaguar, creating different vehicles for a larger and larger market place. To fill the luxury crossover market, Jaguar put the F-Pace into production in 2016.
The F-Pace has everything one expects from a luxury SUV: comfortable seating, great head and legroom, digital display, and the list goes on. The F-Pace actually has many different variants, with more to come, illustrating the versatility of this vehicle. The F-Pace continues Jaguar's tradition of balancing speed, comfort, and timeless design.
Though Jaguar is known for 60s and 70s sports cars with flowing bodies, Jaguar has been busy making a sports car for the 21st century. This came to be in 2013 with the F-Type, a true-blue, Jaguar-style sports car, with all the amenities and safety requirements of today. Jaguar has been working on the F-Type since 2000, prototyping and tweaking the design until it was absolutely perfect.
All that time has paid off and then some, with the F-Type being a return to form for Jaguar's sports cars. The F-Type is sleek and gorgeous, evoking Jag's past designs while taking note of what is popular in the here and now.
With the Pace series, Jaguar has made a strong attempt to adjust to the changing automotive market, taking electric power cars very seriously. It is this striving to remain relevant that has helped Jaguar last and thrive into the 2020s.
The I-Pace, put into production in 2018, is one of Jaguar's newest creations, and one of its most surprising. The I-Pace is an electric SUV that has been heavily decorated for its design and performance, even being the first Jaguar named European Car of the Year. So much praise is well earned, for a vehicle that balances eco-friendliness with a lasting passion for speed.
While Jaguar may be known for their unique designs and craving for speed, some of their best cars are the simplest. Enter the E-Pace, Jaguar's subcompact luxury SUV that does everything a car of its size needs to do. Jaguar decided to reel things in with the E-Pace, focusing on its gas mileage and transverse engine, able to drive in the rear wheel and/or all-wheel drive.
While the E-Pace is not slow by any means, it was not quite made for the track, with Jaguar focusing on a car for the everyday person. However, in Jaguar tradition, there are multiple packages and variants of the E-Pace to serve any driver's needs.
Over its long history, Jaguar has seen the automotive industry explode in popularity, change and change again, evolve, and morph into its current landscape. However, over all that time, Jaguar has held one idea close to heart: racing. Jaguar, from its inception, made cars meant to go fast and to race each other, and the XKR-RS is keeping that tradition's heart beating.
The XKR-RS is a beast, with over 500 horsepower, coming from a powerful 5.0-liter supercharged V-8 engine. Even the XKR-RS' design calls back to Jaguar's glory days of curvy, blisteringly fast, sexy sports cars that were the admiration of all at the track. More so than most, the XKR-RS already feels like a classic Jaguar.