LONDON -- Jaguar will unveil its new XE model at a special event in London on Sept. 8, rather than wait to launch the mid-sized sedan at the Paris auto show in early October.
The XE will be a rival to premium sedans such as the Audi A4, Mercedes-Benz C class and BMW 3 series. Jaguar quit the segment when the slow-selling X-Type was axed in 2009.
The XE is key to boosting volume at Jaguar and putting the under-performing brand on an equal partnership with is sibling, Land Rover.
Combined vehicle sales of Tata Motors' Jaguar Land Rover unit were 240,372 in the first half. Jaguar sales were 43,587, or 18 percent of the total, according to JLR figures.
European sales of the XE start in 2015, followed by U.S. deliveries a year later.
The XE will be the first model to use Jaguar Land Rover’s new aluminum-based rear-wheel-drive architecture.
Jaguar said in a statement that it is confident the car will outperform its rivals dynamically, citing use of a rear integral-link’suspension set-up. "The integral link rear suspension provides a combination of supple ride and crisp handling that is unmatched in this segment," Mike Cross, the brand's chief engineer of vehicle integrity, said in the statement.
Jaguar also said the car will have electric power steering that will allow engineers to incorporate active safety and driver-aid features.
The XE will be the first vehicle to get Jaguar Land Rover's Ingenium family of four-cylinder gasoline and diesel engines. Ingenium engines will be built at a new plant in Wolverhampton, England, starting early next year.
The most frugal diesel XE will have CO2 emissions below 100 grams per kilometer.
Jaguar is expected to launch station wagon and crossover versions of the XE.