The time has come for the compact Jaguar XE to receive a mid-life update, with our spies spotting two camouflaged prototypes during hot-weather testing in Death Valley.
Despite the heavy camouflage, Jaguar’s 3-Series rival isn’t expected to change that much; exterior revisions will include redesigned lights front and rear along with new bumpers and that’s about it. The cabin will be similarly updated with new trim options and colors, along with a range of updated infotainment and active safety systems.
The biggest changes however are expected to take place under the bonnet of the facelifted Jaguar XE.
The British car maker has already announced its electrification plans and the updated XE is expected to offer new mild-hybrid powertrains for better fuel economy and lower emissions.
The mild-hybrid tech will most likely be paired with the existing Ingenium engines, meaning Jaguar will add a belt alternator starter and a small lithium-ion battery that require a 48-volt electrical architecture.
The electrified powertrains will improve fuel efficiency by introducing features like a coasting function and a modern start-stop system, in addition to the obvious combination of petrol and electric power.
With Jaguar having already dropped the V6 versions of the XE in Europe, the days of the supercharged 3.0-liter version of the compact Jaguar are probably numbered in North America as well. Another potential casualty the facelift might bring is the option for a manual transmission in entry-level European models.
The facelifted Jaguar XE is expected for a reveal in 2019, perhaps at the Geneva Motor Show in March, with sales set to launch a few months later.