The 1988 24 hours of Le Mans winning XJR-9
|Designer||Tony Southgate for TWR |
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||2-door Coupé|
|Related||Jaguar XJR-15, Jaguar XJR-12|
|Engine||7.0 L 60 degree V12|
|Wheelbase||2,780 mm (109.4 in) |
|Length||4,780 mm (188.2 in)|
|Width||2,000 mm (78.7 in)|
|Height||1,100 mm (43.3 in)|
|Curb weight||880 kg (1,940 lb)|
An evolution of the design for the XJR-8, the XJR-9 was designed by Tony Southgate, built by Tom Walkinshaw Racing (TWR) and featured a Jaguar 7.0-litre V12 engine based on the production 5.3-litre engine as used in the Jaguar XJS road car. A variant of the XJR-9, the XJR-9LM, would be developed specifically for the 24 Hours of Le Mans where the requirement for high straight line speeds on the Mulsanne Straight necessitated a low-drag aerodynamic package.
In the United States, the Castrol sponsored XJR-9s debuted at the 24 Hours of Daytona, with the car taking the overall win. However, throughout the rest of the IMSA Camel GTP season the XJR-9 was unable to gain another win until the final race of the season, meaning the team had to settle for third in the constructor's championship. In the 1988 World Sports Prototype Championship, the XJR-9, running Silk Cut sponsorship, met with more success. The XJR-9 was able to take six victories, including the 24 Hours of Le Mans, where rookie driver Paul Taylor made his debut aiding in the Le Mans triumph, over the eleven race series. Silk Cut Jaguar won the Teams Championship and Jaguar driver Martin Brundle won the Drivers title. Jaguar's success at Le Mans marked the first time since 1980 that Porsche had not won Le Mans, and the first Le Mans victory for Jaguar since 1957.
For 1989, the XJR-9 was again entered in both IMSA Camel GTP and the World Sports Prototype Championship. However, the XJR-9 was by now dated, and in IMSA was being repeatedly beaten by Nissan, leaving the XJR-9 with only a single win on the season. This led to Jaguar introducing the XJR-10 midway through the season, which met with slightly better success having two wins on the season and usually placing higher than the XJR-9 it ran with. At the end of the season, Jaguar finished 2nd in the championship.
A similar story occurred in the 1989 World Sports Prototype Championship, with Jaguar not winning a single race during the series. Midway through the championship the XJR-11 was developed to replace the XJR-9, although both finished out the season. This disappointment led to Jaguar finishing fourth in the Teams Championship.
In 2010, the car won the Le Mans Legend race.
- Type: 60 degree SOHC 24 valve V12
- Position: Mid, Longitudinally mounted
- Displacement: 6,995 cc (427 cu in)
- Bore: 94 mm (3.7 in)
- Stroke: 84 mm (3.3 in)
- Compression: 12:1
- Injection: Zytek fuel injection
- Aspiration: Naturally aspirated
- Power: 750 hp (760 PS; 559 kW) at 7,200 rpm
- Torque: 828 N⋅m (611 lb⋅ft) at 5,500 rpm
- Body: Carbon Composite body
- Chassis: Carbon fibre and Kevlar monocoque
- Front Suspension: Double wishbones, push-rod activated coil springs over dampers
- Rear Suspension: Magnesium uprights, titanium coil springs over dampers
- Steering: Rack and pinion power steering
- Brakes: TWR ventilated discs
- Transmission: March/TWR 5-speed manual transmission
- Layout: Rear-wheel drive
- Power to weight ratio: 0.85bhp/kg
- Top speed: 245 mph (394 km/h)