Stuffing a big engine into a compact car was always a recipe to have fun, but in the case of the Jaguar XE SV Project 8, things have gove a little further.
This is a four-door compact executive sedan that’s similarly sized to a BMW 3-Series but packs a supercharged 5.0-liter V8 with 592hp (600PS) mated to a rear-biased all-wheel drive system via an eight-speed automatic transmission.
Jaguar’s SVO division really put a huge effort into creating the Project 8, as they basically re-engineered the chassis and bodywork of the car in order to not only make it go fast on the straights, but also corner like a proper road-racing machine.
And what better place to test a road racer than the iconic Targa Florio. In its early years, the historic Sicilian road race included a complete tour of the island, with several versions of the course used in later iterations.
Despite the unforgiving nature of Targa Florio, Henry Catchpole of Carfection discovers the talents of the mighty Project 8, which allows you to use the colossal power of its V8 thanks to its finely tuned chassis and quality damping.
Despite being able to pull 0-60mph runs in 3.3 seconds and lap tracks with an alarming pace, Jaguar’s four-door beast remains a fully exploitable performance car on the roads that matter the most – and that’s worthy of a celebration.