PROJECT 7: Five local customers are lucky enough to own the rare Jaguar F-Type Project 7. Image: Motorpress
• Only 250 units hand-built
• Five destined for SA
• 5.0-litre supercharged V8
• 0-100km/h in 3.9-sec
• 300km/h top speed
Pretoria - In August 2015, Wheels24 reported that the ultra-cool Project 7 would arrive in 2016, since then received spy photographs of the sports car, snapped by a reader, seen for the first time in South Africa.
After all the teasing and spy images, Wheels24's Sean Parker was invited by Jaguar to view the unveiling of the special car by the British (and Indian) automaker in Gauteng in March 2016.
The Project 7 forms part of an SV0 (Special Vehicle Operations) line-up unleashed in South Africa.
John Edwards, managing director Jaguar Land Rover (JLR), said: "Special Operations exists to develop a suite of products and services that enable our most discerning and enthusiastic customers to indulge their passion for our cars.
"F-TYPE Project 7 is a perfect example of one such product."
A tribute to classic Jaguar racers
The Project 7’s distinctive roadster body pays homage to Jaguar's classic race cars - the three-time Le Mans-winning (1965, 1966 and 1967) Jaguar D-Type. Why the number 7? It's in reference to Jaguar’s seven wins at the 24-hour race.
Jaguar SA said: "We were able to secure five orders, giving a select number of customers an opportunity to own a piece of history. The limited-run cars are a true rarity in this era of mass produced cars."
Watch: Project 7 in 360O
The Project 7 uses the automaker's familiar 5.0-litre supercharged V8 engine, producing 423kW (an increase of 19kW over the F-Type R Coupé) and 680Nm, the all-aluminium-bodied car weighs just 1585kg. 0-100km/h is dispatched in a rapid 3.9 seconds and and top speed is limited to 300km/h.
Power is sent to the rear wheels through Jaguar’s eight-speed Quickshift transmission and second-generation electronic active differential. Carbon ceramic matrix brakes, fitted as standard. Another standard feature is torque vectoring.
Torque vectoring applies precise amounts of braking force to individual wheels to accurately sharpen the car’s line through a corner. It works with the electronic differential (which can open or fully locking torque in 200 milliseconds)
Bespoke carbon-fibred aerodynamic aids and a unique suspension set-up.
Key design elements include the D-Type-inspired fairing behind the driver’s head, shorter windshield, new front bumper, and downforce-increasing aerodynamic modifications – including a carbon-fibred front splitter, side skirts, rear diffuser and adjustable rear spoiler.
To keep with the times, the single-seater concept has been transformed into a two-seater, with rollover hoops for both driver and passenger now integrated into the design – as well as a removable roof and 196 litres of stowage space.
A switchable Active Sports Exhaust system with quad, matt-black ceramic coated exhausts are standard - it uses electronically-controlled bypass valves in the rear section of the exhaust which are mapped to open according to a range of parameters. This alters the exhaust gas routing into a free-flowing straight-through arrangement to both reduce back pressure and make it, well sound good. Get a taste of the noise below...
LISTEN: Project 7's 5.0 litre V8 revs
The Project 7 rides on 20" alloys in gloss black and customers can opt to have fitted with high-performance Continental ForceContact tyres.
SV0 has engineered new front suspension knuckles, which, Jaguar says, allow for increased negative camber, as well as revised top mounts and new front/rear anti-roll bars. The front and rear spring and damper units are height adjustable, and both spring rates and damper internals have been tailored specifically to Project 7.
Engaging Dynamic Mode delivers enhanced body control through firmer damping rates, increased steering weighting, faster gear changes and sharper throttle response. Dynamic mode is configurable as standard via the central 8" touchscreen, allowing the driver to select and save settings according to their preference.
The interior is dominated by lightweight race-inspired bucket seats, finished in a quilted racing-style diamond pattern. Four-point racing harnesses are available as an accessory. The interior features carbon-fibred veneer inserts on the console, an Alcantara steering wheel (with leather option), machined aluminium gearshift paddles and bespoke treadplates with the Project 7 logo.
Enhancing its unique appeal, the F-Type Project 7 will be hand-built to exacting standards by Special Operations, and offered in an exclusive, limited-edition production run of up to 250 units globally. Each car will sport a specially numbered plaque, located between the two seats, signed by designer Ian Callum.