Jaguar builds its legacy with F-Type sports car amid a world of SUVs and electric cars

If there's one modern Jaguar that essentially defines the brand's legacy, it's the F-Type sports car.

The model came out in 2013 to rave reviews; a two-seater from the British brand for the first time in nearly 40 years.

It was a return to Jaguar's roots, as it were. A mild redesign this year has allowed the sleek coupe, also available as a roadster, to carry on as a modern-day tribute to its legendary forebears. The coupe version starts at $61,600 and the convertible begins at $64,700.

Looking back to Jaguar's sports cars of the 1950s, the XK series splashed onto the scene with style and power. Through the series, the model's numerical designation was its promised top speed - XK120, XK140 and XK150. The cars appeared on the covers of magazines, in the driveways of celebrities' homes, and even on race tracks.

Then came the stunning E-Type in the 1960s, sold in the U.S. as the XKE. It was a car that even the founder of Ferrari supposedly called "the most beautiful car in the world."

But fast-forward to the different world of the 2020s, and Jaguar is changing with the times. On the heels of its first electric car, the I-Pace, the brand recently announced that its future will be electric. Starting later this decade, Jaguars will begin a big shift to electrification, and eventually Jags will not have combustion engines at all, company officials have declared.

For 2022, the F-Type will have V8 power only, with no more four or six cylinder engines under the hood, and with a higher base price accordingly. But what about further into the future? Once the F-Type finishes its run, whenever that may be, no word yet on whether Jaguar would consider making an electric sports car to continue the legacy.

In the grand scheme of things, even within a luxury car brand, two-seaters just don't sell in high volume, since the vast majority of buyers prefer SUVs.

Jaguar can make electric cars that perform, obviously. The I-Pace, like most electric cars, accelerates very quickly. But will the company include something sleek for two people in their long-range game plan? So far, company officials in England are being tight-lipped about the future with regard to any kind of F-Type replacement.

So for now, if your dream sports car is rumbling and traditional, the clock may be quietly ticking. As Jaguar and the automotive world transition into a new way of thinking, a car like the F-Type may someday end up a piece of automotive history from a bygone era.

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