Jaguar Land Rover’s head of product strategy, Hanno Kirner, remains confident in the survival of enthusiast models

Enthusiast drivers are going to have more choice than ever before as autonomous technology is developed because car firms will be able to increasingly polarise their line-ups, according to Hanno Kirner, Jaguar Land Rover’s head of product strategy.

Kirner believes that while many people will be happy to use autonomous cars day to day – as taxis and shared or owned vehicles – many keen drivers will want to have vehicles they can get behind the wheel of for fun.

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“Whether it is SVO [JLR’s performance arm] recreating classics to modern standards or creating track-day specials, I think it will grow as autonomous driving becomes a regular part of lives,” he said. “I don’t for one second think we’ll see a generation appear with no interest in cars. Driving enthusiasts will still exist and we’ll want to engineer cars for them.

“Today, we have more demand than we can satisfy for such cars and I don’t expect that to change. Yes, there is a generation that is more interested in their phones than anything else today, but they will grow older and want to drive one day.”

The emergence of the SVR brand also casts doubt on whether Jaguar will continue to create R models as a stepping stone between hot S and extreme SVR models. Insiders say the three-tier performance line-up is proving too complex for many buyers. 

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11

28 May 2018

I'm amazed JLR even has a head of product strategy!  Was he on holiday when they decided to drop the Freelander?

28 May 2018

The Discover Sport replaced the Freelander and it's all the much better for it.

 

28 May 2018
pixelpower wrote:

The Discover Sport replaced the Freelander and it's all the much better for it.

 

However it still uses the same antiquated platform, along with the "new" Jaguar E-Pace, and the forthcoming Evoque mk2.  

29 May 2018

Whoa! So let's be clear, you think the larger Discovery Sport replaced the smaller Freelander - the Freelander that was in the sector (smallish 'SUV') that is the biggest-selling sector in cars?  A sector rockets in popularity and JLR go and drop their only contribution to it.  I think you ARE JLR's head of product strategy.  JLR should have taken the Freelander back to its origin (the original Mokka) and competed with the Yeti, the Tiguan, the ugly X1s and X3s, Juke, Quasqai, Ateca.  Instead, JLR left it altogether!  As usual, their strategy makes no sense at all.

28 May 2018
Bazzer wrote:

I'm amazed JLR even has a head of product strategy!  Was he on holiday when they decided to drop the Freelander?

Or when they decided that despite their competition have more than one body type in the "C" segment, they just decided to make one, the XE saloon.  Where is the the estate, the coupe and the cabriolet. Still at least they have Project 8, perhaps if they concentrated more on the core range and less on the vanity products they might see a better return for their investment. Never mind they do have a gazillion SUVs models to sell and steal sales from each other. 

28 May 2018

Former finance director at Aston Martin and Rolls Royce, so basically JLRs head of product  strategy is a glorified bean counter, now its all starting to make sense, and explain the lowering of quality in their most recent products and the rise in price. 

28 May 2018

I write as a long-term Jag owner currently with a V6 supercharged 3L petol F-Pace, awaiting delivery of my i-Pace. I think that the article misses the key point; The V6 petrol engines are being dropped because they no longer meet the emmissions (particulates) standards and JLR have failed to develop a strait 6 Ignium engine to replace them. This leaves a serious hole in their engine range with nothing between the 4 cylinder 2L Ignium and the V8 supercharged engine used in the SVRs. I think this was a big tactical error and JLR are pretending that it was a deliberate plan. Autocar have bought into the deception by accepting that the 5L V8 Supercharged engine is a realistic option. To use the caption "The Jaguar F-Type SVR is one of the brand's top-selling models" on the photo is an illustration of this.

The SVR models will always be rare flagship models that owners aspire to but very few people will actually buy and they will never be 'top-selling'. The F-Type itself is only low volume compared with the F-Pace, XE and even the XF and most F-Types sold do not have the SVR engine.

The SVR engine is fantastic but insane for UK roads yet the 3L supercharged V6 is a brilliant practical alternative at a sensible price. The real story here is that Jaguar are about to lose the best engine most owners will aspire to and their only choice will now be underpowered turbocharged 2L units, the excellent (but still turocharged) 3LD or the very expensive and impractical supercharged SVR.

Lets hope that the prospect of electric and hybrid powered units will help JLR cover the big hole in their ICE power plant line up.

28 May 2018
emperorbruce1 wrote:

I write as a long-term Jag owner currently with a V6 supercharged 3L petol F-Pace, awaiting delivery of my i-Pace. I think that the article misses the key point; The V6 petrol engines are being dropped because they no longer meet the emmissions (particulates) standards and JLR have failed to develop a strait 6 Ignium engine to replace them. This leaves a serious hole in their engine range with nothing between the 4 cylinder 2L Ignium and the V8 supercharged engine used in the SVRs. I think this was a big tactical error and JLR are pretending that it was a deliberate plan. Autocar have bought into the deception by accepting that the 5L V8 Supercharged engine is a realistic option. To use the caption "The Jaguar F-Type SVR is one of the brand's top-selling models" on the photo is an illustration of this.

The SVR models will always be rare flagship models that owners aspire to but very few people will actually buy and they will never be 'top-selling'. The F-Type itself is only low volume compared with the F-Pace, XE and even the XF and most F-Types sold do not have the SVR engine.

The SVR engine is fantastic but insane for UK roads yet the 3L supercharged V6 is a brilliant practical alternative at a sensible price. The real story here is that Jaguar are about to lose the best engine most owners will aspire to and their only choice will now be underpowered turbocharged 2L units, the excellent (but still turocharged) 3LD or the very expensive and impractical supercharged SVR.

Lets hope that the prospect of electric and hybrid powered units will help JLR cover the big hole in their ICE power plant line up.

They had a straight 6, that was very modern, they used it in the Freelander 2, it was a Volvo lump, that could produce decent reliable power, and it would have fitted in the Evoque, E-Pace or any other product using the D8/EUCD platform, I also suspect it could easily have been adapted for other platfoms, it was certainly a better option than the current Ford derived V6. However they are apparently developing an ingenium straight 6.  

28 May 2018

The straight 6 must be coming. They wont have the V8 much longer, and they cant only offer 2.0 4 pots in Europe can they?

They are a deeply infuriating brand. they make some nicely designed cars, and generally road testers love them, but then dont finish them off all that well, offer restricted ranges, and charge way over the top prices, often leading to high early on depreciation. They are not exactly known for being all that well built either. 

I wish they would do less, but do it well. i feel now they are spreading them selves too thin

28 May 2018
artill wrote:

do less, but do it well.

 

That is entirely the key.  They are going for a proliferation of mediocre models, rather than making absolute 'gems' of cars with the engineering sophistication and build quality to command a higher margin.  You cannot scale up from a position of weakness.  I was quite impressed with the F-Pace and entirely underwhelmed with the E-Pace.

If you consider the success of BMW and Mercedes in the 1990s and 2000s, it was underpinned by relatively low volume, but impeccably well built and engineered (and expensive) models produced in the 1970s.  They then scaled up and kept the quality and engineering integrity (at least until the late 1990s).  Their repuations for quality and brand were forged in the earlier decades, and the high margins continue.

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