Designing the Jaguar F-Type Coupé: "Ultimately, you need to be bold"

Design compromises – were there any?

Jaguar F-Type Coupé
Jaguar F-Type Coupé

"No. This answer I give to everyone about design: Design is not about what I want and I'm going to scream until I get it. Design is about understanding the inputs and creating something that works, both visually and practically. Okay, you can measure your practicalities – a two-seater sports car is not practical for carrying four people, to quote an extreme case. You have to make that judgement and deal with the facts.

"For instance, on the C-X16 Concept we had side-opening door that paid homage to the E-Type, which were fun and a bit tongue in cheek. I knew very well we would never get that in reality because it's just not usable. You know, with the E-Type down there, you could lift your luggage in. The F-Type is a lot taller because modern cars have to be and you'd end up scratching the rear spoiler all the time. So then you have to approach and say, "right, what can we do?" What we really wanted to do was protect the shape of the window, which we did do through various iterations of feasibility of the spoiler.

"I think ideally it would've been nice to have a purer rear-window graphic on the rear of the car, but then we've got the glass roof which creates a whole new graphic for the car. I wouldn't have been able to put the glass roof on which comes all the way through the roof. So the answer is no, not really. The roof is actually taller than the C-X16 by about 15mm. But then my job is to disguise that. If you look at the two cars together the C-X16 Concept does sit a little lower. It's my job to disguise that, rather than just completely ignore it... because you don't want to annoy people, tall people. It's alright for me [laughs]."

Can you see the F-Type becoming a legacy model that stays in the range for years, like that of the Porsche 911?

Jaguar F-Type Coupé

"That's a good question. We've always got to make the conversation a little bit of a joke. Do we call it the H-Type or the G-Type? Where do you go?

"The answer to that is I don't know, we've just finished the F-Type Coupé. We have to wait and see. We'll go through the normal process, facelift, which will we need to start quite soon because of timing, but beyond that I don't know.

"To answer your question a bit better, when we do the new one I might not be there, you know, it will be up to the next guy. Who knows. I'm not suggesting I'm going anywhere [laughs]. Will we go the evolutionary way like a Porsche 911, or design a whole new car? I think when the next time comes it will be a new car because, for me, that's the best way to move forward. Ask me in three years and I might have a better idea."

But will it be a Jaguar in three years?

"Oh, it will be a Jaguar alright. Don't you worry about that."