The swivel-eyed lunatic that is the XE-based Jaguar Project 8 is many things. Loud, massively fast, loud, a multiple lap record holder, loud, a surprisingly sophisticated cruiser, loud and loud.
It’s not just the exhaust that’s loud either, as the styling alone makes it one of the most indiscreet cars on the road. That’s partly due to the bulging wheelarches, but mostly it’s the mahoosive rear wing.
The Porsche 911 GT3 Touring has proven that there is a band of people who want the speed, handling and noise of the full-fat 911 GT3 RS, but don’t want the camera-magnet spoiler. Jaguar clearly took note and created this – slightly – less attention grabbing, wingless Touring Spec Project 8.
Instead of the ‘regular’ Project 8’s adjustable carbonfibre edifice, the Touring Spec has a slimline fixed spoiler sat on the trailing edge of the boot lid. The front splitter is fixed, it’s only available as a four-seater and the graphics have been ditched as well.
Mechanically, the Touring Spec is unchanged. So under the bonnet there’s a 5.0-litre, supercharged V8 churning out 592bhp and 516lb/ft of torque. The 0-62mph time is unchanged at 3.3secs, though top speed has been limited to 186mph – the winged version can top 200.
According to Jaguar SVO engineering boss Jamal Hameedi: “Touring specification extends the appeal of Project 8 to performance car enthusiasts and collectors who prefer a more discreet appearance, without compromising its driver-focused on-road dynamics.”
Touring Spec is a no-cost option on the Project 8, which lists at £149,995. But Jaguar only plans to build 15 within the P8’s 300-strong production run. We don’t know how many build slots remain, but there can’t be many.
We’ll take ours in British Racing Green.
By Graham King