Jaguar is prepping a radical F-Type GT3 racing car powered by a high-boost, 1.6 liter, turbocharged four-cylinder engine that its technical partner Cosworth has developed for the road-going version of the stunning C-X75 concept.
The high-tech engine, which is currently in the final stages of development, is said to have been running with up to 700 hp on the Cosworth test bench. Jaguar has already intimated the engine will be good for 500 hp when installed in the hybrid C-X75 supercar (which will come with additional front wheel electric hub motors bumping power back up to 700 hp on demand), and the British luxury and sportscar maker is expected to cap the proposed F-Type installation at a similar 480-500 hp.
If the Jaguar GT racer appears as described it will be a fascinating newcomer in an increasingly disparate sector. Front engine rivals include the differently-mighty Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3 with its 6.3 liter V-8, while cars that put the driver first include the McLaren MP4-12C and of course the almost ubiquitous Porsche 911 GT3.
The F-Type GT3 scheme is said to be part of a £20m customer racing program that – if all goes to plan – would see the Jaguar brand return to the heartland of endurance and GT racing in 2014. As such it would be reasonable to expect the racing F-Type to be compatible with various categories – GT3, VLN (Nurburgring 24hrs) and GTE (Le Mans 24hrs).
The source for this story, British website AtFullChat, says Jaguar's lead development partner for the F-Type GT3 is Williams F1, who have been tasked to run the project alongside development of the road-goingversion of the Jaguar C-X75. (Which as you know is being readied for production in numbers limited to a maximum of 250, each costing circa £700,000 taxes.)
The story also points out that the Williams F1/C-X75 link makes the suggestion of a hybrid version of the GT3 car very plausible too. It was a Williams collaboration with Porsche that created the hybrid 911 GT3 R(Williams owns the flywheel energy store), and a similar technology transfer from the C-X75 seems obvious.
Visually, the racing F-Type package is said to look very similar to the C-X16 concept that launched the F-Type project to the world – note the various carbon fiber aero aids, etc. Was it pure coincidence that the C-X75 and C-X16 stood side-by-side at the Delhi Auto show earlier this year?