What it has done instead is build on the groundwork laid by the Jaguar XF and the first XJ to produce a sleek, compact saloon that is very recognisably a Jaguar.
Underneath, though, it has been far more intrepid. Jaguar to use the iQ platform, an all-new piece of modular architecture that underpins cars as diverse as the XF and Range Rover Evoque.
Aluminium, JLR’s go-to material, accounts for 75 percent of the body weight in the XE, with most of the rest being the high-strength steel found in the doors, boot and rear underbody (for better weight distribution) and in the B-pillars as a reinforcing element.
Use of the alloy makes the platform slightly lighter than that of its rivals, but overall the car is not – a fact partly attributable to Jaguar’s insistence that it uses not only front double wishbones in the XE but also its 'integral link' rear suspension in place of a conventional multi-link setup.
The engineers were willing to absorb the weight penalty because it does a better job of isolating the driven rear wheels from unwanted directional forces, helping to deliver the superior mix of suppleness and agility that typically distinguishes a Jaguar from its rivals. Similarly, the state of tune sought in the electrically assisted steering is intended to be redolent of the immediacy of the F-Type’s.