SPIED: Jaguar Begins Work on C-X16 Coupe with Test Mules

It has only been a week since Jaguar pulled the curtains back on its new C-X16 concept model at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show, but the British automaker has already began work on prototypes that will eventually lead to the production model, which is expected to hit the market as early as 2013.

At a first glance, the prototype seen in these fresh spy shots may seem like an XK Convertible, however, a closer look reveals that it’s a test mule, meaning engineers are using body parts of an existing model on a different platform.

This is evident from the shorter wheelbase (notice the irregular fit of the rear panel behind the door) and rear overhang, as well as the widened tracks and the roll cage inside.

It is believed that the production version of the C-X16, which may or may not be called XE, utilizes a shorter version of the next-generation XK’s aluminium platform. Exterior dimensions will likely remain similar to the study that measured 4,445 mm long, 2,048 mm wide and 1,297 mm tall.

The C-X16 concept was shown with a hybrid system that combines a 380-horsepower 3.0-liter supercharged V6 with a 95HP electric motor integrated in the eight-speed automatic transmission’s structure for a 0-100 km/h (0-62 mph) sprint time of 4.4 seconds and a top speed of 300 km/h (186 mph).

The production model will likely be offered at launch with a conventional V6 powerplant with a hybrid variant to follow later on.

The C-X16 will slot under the next XK as Jaguar’s entry-level coupe aiming at both the Porsche Cayman and the 911.

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