The New Jaguar S-TYPE | Part Four

The new S-TYPE – what’s changed for 2004?

Whatever the engine choice, every version of the new S-TYPE benefits from the visual, dynamic, quality and specification improvements announced in January.

"This car has a focal point and it’s clear what it is – the front grille and twin headlamps. But to make it work, everything around that focus has to be as simple as possible, and the extensive changes for 2004 are designed to achieve precisely that."

Ian Callum, Jaguar Director of Design

The styling changes introduced across the range give the new S-TYPE a more athletic, more contemporary look, with cleaner and leaner lines and subtly revised proportions. The new shape remains highly individual and true to the Jaguar brand, but brings with it significant quality improvements, especially in tighter panel fits.

The car’s dynamics benefit from revisions such as sleeker aerodynamics and a lighter aluminium (rather than steel) bonnet that improves weight distribution and optimises handling balance.

Every new S-TYPE also features new instruments, improvements to material and build quality, and a wider choice of colour and trim – including a sporty aluminium facia as standard on the S-TYPE Sport and S-TYPE R and a new Bronze Madrona wood veneer option on other models – increasing the feel of contemporary luxury but in an unmistakably Jaguar style.

The aluminium facia echoes that of legendary Jaguar sports cars such as the E-TYPE – known as the XKE in the American market – but is actually the first time that an alternative to wood trim has been available inside a Jaguar S-TYPE.

The new S-TYPE also offers an even greater range of styling, comfort and convenience features. These include five new wheel styles, Adaptive Cruise Control and the option of Front Park Assist.

The new front suspension and extensively revised rear suspension introduced in 2002 continues in the new S-TYPE with material and tuning improvements to provide even better body control. As such, the new S-TYPE continues to deliver the outstandingly supple ride, taut body control and agile handling that are the defining characteristics of Jaguar’s sporting chassis dynamics.

The modified S-TYPE Diesel’s suspension includes retuned dampers and revised spring rates to achieve improved handling-balance and poise, and low friction ball joints which facilitate free suspension movement, allowing the dampers to work more efficiently and producing a smoother and more consistent ride. Sports suspension with optimised springs and uprated dampers is an optional package, and 18-inch alloy wheels are now available as an option on any version of the new S-TYPE.

Servotronic variable-ratio power steering, powerful all-disc brakes with traction control, ABS anti-lock and Emergency Brake Assist are standard across the new S-TYPE range. Other key features that highlight the S-TYPE’s technological approach to the premium sports saloon customer are the Electronic Parking Brake (standard on all models) and Jaguar’s acclaimed Computer Active Technology Suspension (CATS). This latter system – standard on the R derivative and optional on all others – provides sophisticated electronic damper control while retaining maximum comfort.

Electronic Traction Control, Dynamic Stability Control and Jaguar’s innovative occupant-sensing Adaptive Restraint Technology System (A.R.T.S.) also come as standard.

continues... | Part Five
Published 3 March 2004 Melanie Carter

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