The new Jaguar XE 300 SPORT has made its debut by setting a unique lap record. The special edition sports saloon became the first car to complete a flying lap of the world’s longest artificial outdoor ice circuit, at Flevonice in the Netherlands - but it had to beat a Winter Olympic gold medallist skater to set the fastest time.
After anchoring Hungary to gold in the 5,000m relay at the 2018 Winter Olympics, speed skater Shaolin Sándor Liu set a tough benchmark, negotiating the track at Flevonice Sports and Funpark in 4 minutes 4 seconds.
To give the icy time trial an extra edge, Shaolin’s girlfriend – Team GB skater Elise Christie – was part of team Jaguar. With Elise in the passenger seat, the XE 300 SPORT took full advantage of Jaguar’s sophisticated traction technologies to maintain its composure. Jaguar Stability Development Leader Sean Haughey lapped the track in 3 minutes 3 seconds at an average speed of 59km/h (36mph).
Mike Cross, Chief Engineer at Jaguar Land Rover, said: “Ice is one of the most demanding surfaces for any vehicle to contend with and this race demonstrated the XE’s all-surface capability and unrivalled handling in adverse conditions.”
Staying true to Jaguar’s sports car DNA, the new 300 SPORT is equipped with the advanced 300PS 2.0-litre Ingenium petrol engine, which powers the XE from 0-100km/h in 5.7 seconds (0-60mph in 5.4 seconds). With 400Nm of torque, its effortless acceleration around the 3km ice circuit was too much for the Olympic Champion.
Shaolin Sándor Liu, said: “I thought I would have a big advantage over the car on the ice and was pretty happy with my time considering the conditions but when I saw the XE 300 SPORT take off from the start line, I had a feeling it would be faster.”
Elise Christie said: “I was desperate to pit myself against the XE 300 SPORT but sitting in the passenger seat gave me an experience I’ll never forget. I didn’t think it would be able to lap the track as quickly as an Olympic Champion, but the Jaguar’s traction was really impressive.”
The new 300 SPORT joins the XE line-up and is available on the XF featuring unique exterior and interior design elements.
All 300 SPORT models feature unique Dark Satin Grey details including the door mirror caps, rear spoiler and grille surround, along with 300 SPORT badging on the front grille and bootlid. Distinctive 19-inch or 20-inch Satin Technical Grey finish wheels are exclusive to the special edition along with 300 SPORT-branded brake callipers. Customers can choose from three exterior colours: Yulong White, Indus Silver and Santorini Black, while the XE is also available in Caldera Red.
Special design accents continue inside with yellow contrast stitching on the steering wheel, seats, door casings and armrest. Other modifications include 300 SPORT branded treadplates (with an illumination option in the XF), sport carpet mats, badged steering wheel and embossed headrests.
The XE and XF enable customers to be more connected, with Jaguar’s advanced Touch Pro 10-inch touchscreen infotainment system as standard.
Further design enhancements as standard across all three models include metal treadplates with Jaguar script (illuminated on XF derivatives), chrome side window surround, chrome seat switches for all electric seats, premium carpet mats, bright metal pedals and frameless auto-dimming Infinity Mirror.