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None of Jaguar’s current model lines will remain after EV transformation

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Thierry Bollore

Jaguar Land Rover CEO Thierry Bollore last week made the shock announcement that Jaguar’s full lineup will consist exclusively of electric vehicles as soon as 2025.

But the automaker doesn’t plan to simply redesign current models like the XF sedan and F-Pace crossover with battery-electric power. Instead, it plans a full reboot that will see new model lines introduced and the lineup likely pruned.

The reboot could also see the Jaguar brand repositioned as a more premium offering. Citing people familiar with Bollore’s plans, Automotive News (subscription required) reported this week that Jaguar will ditch the premium market dominated by the German brands and target the luxury market where brands like Aston Martin, Bentley and Maserati operate.

Thierry Bollore

The claim is backed by comments made by Bollore in a press conference following last week’s announcement, where he said, “we will reposition completely the Jaguar brand.” He also said in the conference that the repositioning is why plans for an electric XJ originally due in 2020 have been scrapped.

Key to the repositioning will be the development of a battery-electric platform exclusive to Jaguar. Land Rover will have two platforms of its own, both of them designed to support hybrid and battery-electric vehicles.

At this point Jaguar doesn’t have much to lose with a reboot. Last year it managed to sell slightly more than 100,000 vehicles. That’s only one fifth of what Tesla sold, despite Jaguar having two more model lines.

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Autos

2022 Audi Q4 E-Tron, 2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz, Mercedes-Benz AMG One: This Week’s Top Photos

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2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS

Audi expanded its lineup of electric vehicles with the reveal of the new Q4 E-Tron and Q4 Sportback E-Tron. The handsome compact crossover duo arrive at dealerships later this year and should offer around 250 miles on a charge.

2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS

Another new electric vehicle in the headlines this week was the 2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS, and it did not disappoint. The svelte electric sedan combines an S-Class grade interior with impressive technology, and this should help it attract well-heeled buyers looking to make the switch from gasoline to electrons.

Nissan GT-R Nismo Special Edition

Nissan GT-R Nismo Special Edition

Nissan is close to launching a redesigned Z, but the automaker’s other sports car, the GT-R, will soldier on in its current form for a little while longer. This week, Nissan introduced a special version of the GT-R Nismo range-topper. It features a unique look and upgraded engine internals.

2021 Volkswagen Arteon

2021 Volkswagen Arteon

Volkswagen updated the Arteon for 2021, adding new technology and styling tweaks that push the svelte sedan even closer to near-luxury status. This week we posted up our review of the car.

2021 Toyota Supra

2021 Toyota Supra

Another car we tested was the 2021 Toyota Supra, specifically the 6-cylinder. The car’s got gobs of power, but the same enthusiasts who are eager for this might find the lack of a manual gearbox unforgivable.

Mercedes-Benz AMG One spy shots - Photo credit: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

Mercedes-Benz AMG One spy shots – Photo credit: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

Development of Mercedes-Benz AMG’s Formula One-powered hypercar is almost complete, with prototypes this week hitting the Nürburgring for the first time. While the One may be delayed, the wait will definitely be worth it for the 275 future owners.

High-riding Porsche 911 prototype spy shots - Photo credit: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

High-riding Porsche 911 prototype spy shots – Photo credit: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

Another car testing on the ‘Ring was a high-riding Porsche 911. Porsche has said such a car would be a good idea, and now it looks like one is coming.

2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz

2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz

And finally, Hyundai revealed its 2022 Santa Cruz. The compact pickup truck is related to the Hyundai Tucson, and we’ll see it at dealerships this summer.

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Autos

Filling in for the Chinese Grand Prix

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Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari (Imola)

Round two of the 2021 Formula One World Championship takes us to historic Imola in Italy this weekend, where a special race, the Made in Italy and Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, is being held.

The race fills in for the usual Chinese Grand Prix which was canceled this year due to disruptions caused by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. This will be the second year in a row that the Imola racetrack, officially the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari, hosts an F1 race.

The anti-clockwise circuit, which in previous times has hosted the Italian and San Marino Grands Prix, has been in continuous use and updated considerably over the years. For instance, the old Variante Bassa is gone and the long straight heading into Tamburello is now broken up by two right-hand corners. More run-off areas have been added, especially at Variante Alta.

As for the track itself, it stretches 3.08 miles and is quite narrow in places, which adds to the challenge of overtaking and puts an emphasis on strategy. Although it was given fresh asphalt prior to last year’s race, it is still quite bumpy and there are some big curbs, placing notable demands on the cars and drivers.

Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari (Imola)

Just over 70 percent of a lap is taken at full-throttle, the third-highest percentage of the 2021 F1 tracks. This includes 15 seconds of foot-to-the-floor lap time from the exit of the final corner to the braking zone for Turn 2.

Looking at the weather forecast, we should be in for fine conditions for most of the weekends. However, there’s a chance we could see some rain during Sunday’s race. Pirelli has nominated its mid-range C2, C3 and C4 tires for the race.

Following the first practice session on Friday, Mercedes-Benz AMG’s Valtteri Bottas was the quickest, followed by fellow Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton. Rounding out the top three was Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen who hopefully will challenge the Mercedes duo for victory like he did in the season opener in Bahrain.

Going into Saturday’s qualifying and Sunday’s race, Hamilton leads the 2021 Drivers’ Championship with 25 points. Verstappen is second with 18 points and Bottas is third with 16 points. In the Constructors’ Championship, Mercedes leads with 41 points, versus the 28 of Red Bull and 18 of McLaren. Last year’s winner at Imola was Hamilton driving for Mercedes.

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Electric Ferrari locked in for 2025

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John Elkann

Ferrari will unveil an electric vehicle in 2025, Chairman John Elkann said on Thursday during the company’s annual general meeting.

The news of an electric Ferrari doesn’t come as a huge surprise as patent drawings filed by Ferrari for a modular electric drive system were discovered last year.

Elkann didn’t provide any details on the vehicle but former CEO Louis Camilleri in 2019 said the company was studying the potential for a grand tourer-style car, suggesting it won’t be a supercar like the upcoming Lotus Evija or Rimac C_Two.

Camilleri, who stepped down from Ferrari last year due to personal reasons, also said in 2019 that an electric Ferrari would eventually come, though only after 2025.

John Elkann

During Ferrari’s annual general meeting, Elkann also said that the search for Camilleri’s replacement was ongoing, and that the lucky man or woman will give an update on Ferrari’s future plans during a capital markets day presentation to be held in 2022.

Recent rumors have pointed to Ferrari’s first EV being a crossover, which does make some sense as a heavy battery would be less likely to negatively affect the performance of a crossover compared to a supercar. Ferrari next year will launch its first crossover, the Purosangue, and according to the rumors the platform of the high-riding Prancing Horse has been designed to support electric powertrains.

Ferrari in the past has flip-flopped on the idea of launching an electric car but stricter emission rules and changing market trends has likely convinced the automaker of the need for having one. The company has previously cited a lack of suitable battery technology as the main hurdle.

While an electric Ferrari is still a few years off, the company will focus on plug-in hybrid technology in the interim. The company has just launched the plug-in hybrid SF90 Stradale and targets a 60-percent electrified lineup by 2022. The company is also looking into more alternatives, such as using hydrogen or biofuels.

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