Posh and very stately, the Jaguar S-Type featured an exterior that was reminiscent of the 1960's Jaguar saloons. The S-Type was designed to fill the market gap between the top of the range MK X and the Mk II. It was not meant to be a replacement to the MK II, rather as an alternative to the slow selling MK X in territories where the vehicle was selling well. Unveiled at the 1998 Birmingham Motor Show, the Jaguar S-Type was introduced as a lower priced mid-size substitute for the forerunner XJ. The rear of the S-Type was given similar styling to the larger Mk X and was fitted with the independent rear suspension that gad originally been designed for the MK X and the E-Type. In addition, duel fuel tanks were placed inside each rear fender. Slimmer more compact MK X style bumpers were joined front and rear and were later incorporated in the 240/340 revision of the MK II.
In the 1960's, the original S-Type was initially debuted, and a lot of the same similarities were used utilized in the 21st century version. The most obvious retro feature on the Jaguar S Type was the oval grille. The Jaguar S-Type was engineered in two versions, a Sedan 3.0 which received its power from a 3.0 liter V6 engine that was designed by Ford, and the 4.0 version which received its power from a 4.0 liter V8 engine that was produced by Jaguar. Weighing in at 3,580 lbs, the S-Type was approximately 15 feet 7 inches long, 4 feet 7 ¾ inches high, and had a width of 5 feet 6 ½ inches. The top speed was 120 mph and had a wheelbase of 107.375 inches.
The original engineering alliance between Jaguar and its brand new owner, Ford. The S-Type was built on the Ford DEW platform that was shared with the Lincoln LS. A luxury/executive vehicle, the S-Type finally went on sale in 1999 as a luxury model in the sedan category. Produced at Jaguar's Castle Bromwich facility in Birmingham, the nomenclature S-Type was revival of an earlier Jaguar model that had been introduced in 1963. The bodywork seems to have been inspired by the Jaguar Mark 2. Geoff Lawson was responsible for the style behind the S-Type and is based on the Jaguar DEW platform and the Ford DEW Platform though it had numerous modifications and updates.
The interior of the S-Type was quite similar to the MK II though a few detail differences could be found. The interior lacked the picnic tables, and the dash center was encased in walnut rather than the black leather used in the MK II. There was more rear seat leg and headroom thanks to a different roofline, and independent rear suspension ensured a smoother ride than the live axle of the MK II.
In 2003 the supercharged S-Type R joined the lineup and it carried the high hopes of competing with BMW's M5 and the Mercedes E55 AMG. Powered by a supercharged V8 that produced 400 hp, the R version could achieve 0 to 60 mph in just 5.3 seconds. The R type received 18 inch alloy wheels, spectacular monochromatic paint and a wire-mesh grille. A much sportier rear apron was also found on the R type, and the front apron received built-in fog lamps, and along with a brace that was found near the rear subframe, and a rear spoiler, the R received 'R' badging on the trunk lid and both front wings. The R type was the most elite and expensive Jaguar S-Type and started at a base price of £50,040 in the U.K. and $58,995 in the U.S.
The second generation 2003 model received an electronic parking-brake paddle-switch in place of the current manually-operated lever for the back brakes along with an updated 3.0L V6 engine with 235 hp rather than the 210 hp for the 1999 until 2002 model. Three models were now offered, the entry level was powered by a 3.0 liter V6 engine, a brand new 4.2 model; powered by a 4.2 Liter V8 engine and an R model. For 2003, the new S-Type received an updated dash, a grille with the Jaguar badge which gave the model a resemblance closer to a Jaguar, and also a revised instrument cluster.
The S-Type was equipped with either a 5-speed J-Gate Ford 5R55N transmission or a 5-speed manual transmission from 2000 until 2002. A variety of petrol and diesel engines were offered in the Jaguar S Type, and the 2.5 L V6 engine wasn't available for exports heading to the U.S. or Canada. From 2003 until its discontinuation, the rear-wheel-drive S-Type came with either a 6-speed J-Gate transmission that allowed automatic gear selection or clutch-less manual gear selection, or a 5-speed manual transmission. In 2004 the Jaguar S-Type received the option of a 6-speed manual transmission.
In 2005, the S-Type received an overall update that included the addition of newly redesigned standard front and rear aprons, remodeled rear light clusters, a refitted grille, an aluminum hood and a brand new 2.7 L V6 diesel engine. The windscreen wiper arms received windscreen washer jets. The interior of the 2005 Jaguar S-Type got an updated center console which now included the updated switch-gear and radio. Optional equipment included satellite navigation, or an assistance system that was powered by a cellular phone that was placed in the dashboard, a system to monitor temperatures inside the vehicle. Music could also be controlled by instruction from the phone.
For 2007 and 2008 years, no changes were made to the car design or body. Spring, 2008, the Jaguar S-Type was deleted and replaced with all new XF. On January 3, 2007 the concept Jaguar C-XF was debuted at the North American International Auto Show.By Jessica Donaldson