The Jaguar XKR, in all its various configurations – steel-bodied X100 or newer aluminium X150 model – is essentially a thorn in the side of Aston Martin. With its supercharged V8 delivering effortless power, and elegant good looks, the XKR is a British GT car that really ought to make you think carefully about whether or not you really need an Aston Martin DB7/DB9.
Okay, so it doesn’t have V12 power, but it really is a fantastic (slightly) cheaper alternative to an Aston. Over the sixteen years the XKR was in production (1998 to mid-2014), power went from 375hp to 550hp for the last-of-the-line XKR-S and GT models, while engine displacement went from 4.0-litres to 5.0-litres. X100 cars got a five-speed automatic gearbox, while the XK150 got a six-speed unit.
Essentially, though, the recipe for an XKR was unchanged for a decade and a half and although many modern hot hatches are quicker than a standard XKR – especially the earlier ones, judging this Jag on point-to-point pace is rather, er, missing the point of it, if you’ll forgive the pun. We won’t see cars like this again and, in many ways, that’s rather a shame.