SG at the Wheel: 2016 Jaguar XE
checking out the new premium sedan
This past weekend, I attended the launch of the Jaguar XE in London. Since I’d just gotten back from a trip to France, I was a little worried the summer cold I’d caught on vacation would hit again, with all that travel. And then I remembered that worrying about two international trips in as many weeks was a pretty great worry to have, so I stopped worrying about it.
The launch itself surprised and delighted me (though, not everyone) – the brand put on an industrial musical! A Broadway-esque show conceived and staged entirely for the benefit of a company and its employees, I’d heard about this post-WWII business boom byproduct during a podcast awhile back. Steve Young, a writer for Letterman, authored a book on the subject, called Everything’s Coming Up Profits (check it out to hear a few tunes from the time, odes to cleaning products and aluminum and the like).
While Jaguar could have taken the budget required to create and stage a full-fledged 90-minute musical and thrown it at, say, Sam Smith to belt out a few numbers for the crowd, it takes a strong sense of humor, not to mention confidence, to try something so different with a crowd made up primarily of car dealers in bad suits.
Were some of the themes presented with a heavy hand? Sure (Jaguar is a brand with HERITAGE! But they also look to the FUTURE!). And was the token female character’s role to simply remind the audience that chicks dig dudes driving around in a good-looking cat? Definitely. But singing it didn’t make it any less true!
The 3-Series fighter hits the market in the US in 2016, and as two of the brand’s target buyer segments (young[ish] AND a woman!), I’m excited to eventually get behind the wheel of an XE and see if I can take it 0-60 in 4.9 seconds, if the tech specs are to be believed.
At the event, the brand also showed off its deep bench, with ten of its best brought in and polished to perfection for the crowd’s admiring ooh’s and aah’s.