A renowned automotive designer, Ian Callum is responsible for such notable works as the Aston Martin DB7 and Vanquish, and the Nissan R390 Le Mans race car. The British designer started at Jaguar in 1999 where he would go on to help pen the XK, XF, a href="/auto-shows/beijing/2013-jaguar-xj-ultimate" target="_self">XJ, C-X75, C-X16 and the new F-Type.
Can you tell us how the new F-Type came about?
I've been waiting 10 years to do this car. We had two stabs at this previously. But the brand wasn't ready for it. Now we are and I think the car speaks for itself.
Why has it taken so long?
No car is easy to design these days. Sports cars are a bit more straightforward than a family car. A sports car is an indulgent car. It is for just two persons. But actually, this car has been hugely demanding for the team. I was determined to get purity out of it, which required a lot of discipline. Design people tend to put more into a shape. We wanted to take things out to have a pure shape.
Where did you get your inspiration for the car?
There is some influence here from the C-X75, which we are still developing, by the way. I get more pleasure out of the because of its scale. The F-Type will be a more approachable car, rooted in our history of doing C-, D- and E-Types.
How close is the F-Type to the C-X16 concept?
It will be quite close to the concept, except that it is a convertible, not a coupe. That is not to say we won't do a coupe.
So except for the top, it will be the same?
Concept cars are a bit of a tease, a lot of times you don't deliver. But what's the point then? That's why we want the final product to be as close to the concept as possible.