2018 Jaguar XJR575Enlarge Photo
Almost since the two legendary British brands were brought together in 1998, Jaguar has played second fiddle to its sibling Land Rover.
The maker of traditional, sporty British sedans was left in search of a mission as increasingly upscale Land Rovers and even pricier Range Rovers proliferated, essentially saving the company.
Recently, Jaguar has broken the mold by offering new SUVs, including the F-Pace and forthcoming E-Pace.
The brand's other mission is to lead Jaguar Land Rover into electric vehicles—and executives have apparently decided that no Jaguar model remains sacred in the brand's quest.
Later this year, the new Jaguar I-Pace electric vehicle will arrive at dealers in Europe; it will be the company's all-electric model, let alone the first ever from Jaguar.
Now, according to Autocar, a dwindling market for large luxury sedans and a rising tide of electric vehicles has pushed JLR to reinvent its biggest sedan, the XJ, as an all-electric Tesla Model S competitor.
Jaguar I-Pace undergoes final validation testing in Los AngelesEnlarge Photo
The next-generation XJ is due to appear in 2019 for the 2020 model year, just after the model's 50th anniversary. The current model was launched back in 2010.
The company hopes the new Jaguar XJ will be seen as a technology flagship for the brand, ushering the automaker into a new era of luxury motoring.
With a fast, sleek, long-range electric XJ, Jaguar hopes to have a better shot at taking on not only German stalwarts but also the upstart California carmaker.
More tradition is to be tossed out the window as well.
Aside from its battery-electric powertrain, the XJ is also said to abandon the traditional three-box sedan shape in favor of a hatchback model, similar to the Audi A7 and Porsche Panamera ... and the Tesla Model S.
The all-electric Jaguar I-Pace, meanwhile, is expected to arrive in the United States late this year with a starting price just north of $75,000.