Jaguar has launched its new 300 Sport Edition range straight to victory in a gripping race on ice against a champion Olympic speed skater.
The British firm has introduced the 300 Sport trim level to its XE, XF and XF Sportbrake – with the first of those competing against gold medallist Shaolin Sándor Liu in a head-to-head lap time battle around the world’s longest artificial outdoor ice circuit in Flevonice, the Netherlands.
The Hungarian skater set a benchmark time of four minutes and four seconds around the 1.9-mile frozen track. It proved to be but a small hurdle for the XE Sport 300 though, with the all-wheel-drive car completing the lap in a blistering three minutes and three seconds. Jaguar’s stability development leader Sean Haughey sat at the helm of that run – while Team GB skater, and Sándor Liu’s girlfriend, rode along in the passenger seat.
Sándor Liu said: “I thought I would have a big advantage over the car on the ice and was pretty happy with my time considering the conditions but when I saw the XE 300 Sport take off from the start line, I had a feeling it would be faster.”
The stunt marks the launch of 300 Sport, which brings a 2.0-litre, 296bhp four-cylinder petrol engine to the XE, and a 3.0-litre diesel motor with the same output for both XF variants.
Distinguishing the trim is the addition of dark satin grey highlights around the exterior of each car – such as on the door mirror caps, rear spoiler and grille surround – along with 300 Sport badging on the front grille and boot lid.
There’s also branded brake calipers, as well as the choice of 19- or 20-inch alloy wheels. Three exterior colours are on offer for all three models – Yulong White, Indus Silver and Santorini Black – while XE Sport 300 customers can also opt for Caldera Red.
Mike Cross, chief engineer at Jaguar Land Rover, said: “Ice is one of the most demanding surfaces for any vehicle to contend with and this race demonstrated the XE’s all-surface capability and unrivalled handling in adverse conditions.”
The Jaguar XE Sport 300 is now available to order, with prices starting from £45,160.