Coming from the XK series of grand tourer cars produced by Jaguar since 1996, the rear-wheel drive XK8 replaced the 1997-designed XJS and was available as a coupe and convertible. Gaining its reputation as one of the more lovely automobiles of its day, it was a fitting descendant of Jaguar’s most famous sports car, the XK-E. It was the first eight-cylinder vehicle produced by Jaguar, preceding the XJ, the Sedan, and the XJ8L model autos and as such was dubbed XK8 to denote the V8 engine that replaced the old six-cylinder. Known for its “movie star car” attributes, this is the kind of ride that can make both chicks and dudes alike look over their shoulders to catch a glimpse of the flashy thing that drove past them. Presently, it remains a paragon of style and a handsome status symbol. Holding up well over the years, the XK8, what changes it has undergone through the years and its technological milestones, unfold here.
2003: Fresh hot wheels
Restyling for the 2003 model year XK8 included fresh alloy wheels plus new badging and headlights. Other than that, it had still been saddled with a fabric tonneau cover that had to be installed manually.
2004: Short braking distance, fast acceleration
This was the model year when the Dynamic Stability Control to prevent wheelspin and the emergency brake assist controls to produce the shortest possible braking distance during emergencies became standard. It was also the year when Jaguar designers claimed that the XK8 can accelerate from zero to 60 miles per hour in 6.1 seconds.
Modifications for 2005 were modest and centered on the front end, making a full-grille splitter evident. The wheels were 19 inches in diameter, and it was powered by a 4.2-liter V8 engine.
2006-present: The culmination of the perfect auto
A 294-horsepower V8 engine drove the six-speed ZF automatic transmission in the model year 2006 of Jaguar XK8. Riding on standard 18-inch alloy wheels, it got a new bar-type chrome mesh grille similar to other Jaguar models for 2006. In the low-slung XK8, the space was snug, with the legroom moderately roomy.
The vehicle had rain-sensing wipers and a premium, 320-watt Alpine audio system with a cassette player and six-CD changer. Its safety features included the Adaptive Restraint Technology System, consisting of side-impact airbags with head-protection extensions placed in the front-seat backrest cushions; traction control; all-disc antilock brakes; and Reverse Park Control to warn the driver of obstacles while he is backing up.