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XJ220 was doomed

08-28-2003, 02:23 PM
Original Vehicle

1984 Jim Randle drew up the specs for a 500hp Supercar
Randle was given the green light by the chairman John Egan to proceed with the project, provided that work on the vehicle was undertaken after hours and at weekends. Participating members of the engineering team therefore became recruits of the exclusive 'saturday club'.

The single original XJ220 was completed for the Birmingham NEC 1988 motor show.(ENGLAND)

The car was driven by a V12 6.2 Liter 48 valves and twin over head cams as opposed to the customary single cams (like in the XJS's V12)
It was mounted midship and used an FF developments transmission system (this car was AWD).
It also had Scissor doors

Newly Established Jaguar Sport evaluated the car. Jaguar sport was set up collaboratively by the company and racing car constructor Tom Walkinshaw.

FORD took over Jaguar in 1989 and proceeded with the project in 1989

The Car was launched in October 1991 at the Tokyo Motor Show almost 10 years after it was concieved but Ford had chosen to drop the Hexagonal design body (featured in the Ford GT - 90) and the V12.

GT-90 shared some Design implements to the original XJ220 although not visible.

1992 Production

Ford and the Recession played its part in the demise of the Vehicle as the price kept going up after they launched it and no one could afford it in the end. 275 were built and like many said Jaguar probably still has a lot of them. Awesome cars they are too.

It was replaced with a 3.5 Litre twin turbocharged V6 as used in the XJR-11 Sports Racer. Developing 542hp it was more powerful that the 1988 prototype but nobody was exciting by the prospect of losing 6 cylinders.

People weren't happy nor where they any happier when Walkinshaw brought out a faster and V12 powered XJR-15. If only they knew it was shite. The engine was mounted way too high. It had a tendency to spin out and most of the Driver's who drove it lived in fear of it. It was best described as uncontrollable. It was classified by many people as the worst handling car of all time. It was the sucessor to the XJR-12 but failed misserably and never won a thing in its two race career.

Production Car (never released):

Race Car :

A main rival of the car was the Ferrari F40 which had no creature comforts. Yet the XJ220 still could beat it in a straight line.

The accelaration is ferocious and Turbo Lag was huge but when it got going it was seriously quick.
Featured on numerous TV shows. It appeared one time on Top Gear as one of those cars that are seriously good but the price has dropped a tonne. Jeremy Clarkson Mashed the accelerator and as soon as the Turbo's got up to boost the Stereo flew out of the center console.
He also has done video called Apocalypse Clarkson where he demonstrates the Lag of the Turbo. 4th Gear at 60mph. It hangs at 60 for a couple of seconds and then shoots up to 175mph.
Qoute "now thats what i call turbo lag!"

A Qoute from Clarkson's Hot 100

"I drove one only once in Dubai and can recognise that there are a huge number of shortcomings. It feels heavier than it really is, and it really is heavy. And the cockpit is more cramped that a pornstar's underpants (underwear). And you can't see out the of the back properly. And worst of all, the Metro 6R4 Engine, despite the fancy turbocharging, is still a Metro 6R4 Engine which means it's about 42 miles away from being a classic."

Metro 6R4

"Nevertheless, overall, the 220 is a giggle mainly because even in Dubai where money grows in the desert, people stop and stare at you like you're from the planet Zarg. Not for long though because it really does move."

11-11-2003, 04:57 PM
Beautiful article there, mate!

993cc Man
01-19-2004, 07:41 PM
Yeah, nice article appart from the fact that the info on the XJR-15 is totally wrong! This car was VERY MUCH released and they actually run a 1-make racing series for a year. After that, each of the 20 or so owners had the chance to have his/her car made street-legal (which was not very difficult as TWR who developed it had made provisions for). I have somewhere a british car mag that did a sort of test-drive and reported that it was a world apart from the XJ220 much more raw and nimble and certainly nothing like you describe it. However as with the XJ the timing was bad, if a car like this (or similar taking into account recent advancments) were to appear today I assure you it would be a different story...

02-16-2005, 11:10 AM
i wasn't released directly to the general public though was it?
It was released for racing purposes but i didn't know they made some street legal thats interesting :biggrin:

03-29-2005, 07:17 PM
General public? No....but it was never meant to be. . TWR only planned and sold 20 cars to wealthy privateers to specifically take part in the one-make-series championship. It was never meant to go and race FIA events like Le Mans etc. Although the name suggests a racecar like the XJR-9,12 etc it had little to do with those cars. Contrary to the XJ220 it had a V12 engine and was much lighter. Some owners opted to road-legalize their cars after the season was over. Here's a pic of the leaner and meaner XJR-15 (


03-29-2005, 07:25 PM
.and here's the full field in a promotion fotograph (

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