The more I see the XKR-S, the more I warm to its smack-you-in-the-face looks, which convey in a far from subtle manner that…er, the XKR-S is anything but subtle. Quite the opposite to the elegant style we’ve come to expect from Jaguar in recent years, and in stark contrast to the graceful beauty of the classic E-type.

The XKR-S was launched last week at the Geneva Motor Show, which marked the 50th anniversary of the iconic E-type’s first appearance at the same show. In this Golden anniversary year of the E-type, Jaguar have come together with Goodwood to celebrate the model by occupying the ‘central feature’ space in front of Goodwood House throughout the 2011 Festival of Speed.

The sculpture, designed by Gerry Judah, promises to follow the tradition of dramatic structures that have graced the Goodwood lawn.

Jaguar E-type

Celebrations will begin at the Goodwood Festival of Speed Press Day next week, where the XKR-S will make its UK debut.

At the Festival of Speed (1-3 July) the new XKR-S will take on the notorious Goodwood Hill along with an array of classic E-types including the rare lightweight racing machines and examples of all three generations of the iconic sports car.

The fastest Jaguar in a generation thanks to its 542 bhp supercharged AJ-V8 engine, the XKR-S is capable of accelerating from rest to 100 mph in just 8.7 seconds before reaching a top speed of 186 mph.

With substantially revised suspension architecture, new springs and dampers as well as revisions to the electronic systems controlling the Dynamic Stability Control and Active Differential, the XKR-S has the composure and traction to harness the extra power. On both Press Day and Festival of Speed, Mike Cross, Chief Engineer, Vehicle Integrity, will be at the wheel to demonstrate the abilities of the car.

Jaguar will also have a significant presence at the Goodwood Revival later in the year (16-18 September) with a diverse range of historic vehicles joining those classic E-types.

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