KNYSNA MOTORING NEWS - Jaguar's PACE family of SUVs promises to be a highlight of the weekend's Jaguar Simola Hillclimb in Knysna when a wide variety of Jaguar's cats will come out to play in the coveted King of the Hill competition.
The driver lineup comprises first-time racers, regulars and a world champion motor sportsman.
Heading the charge in the Supercars Class is Jaguar South Africa's national after-sales manager, Dawie Olivier. Olivier has competed in every Jaguar Simola Hillclimb and is entered in Class A7 for super- or turbocharged road-going cars with eight cylinders or more. He will be seen in action in a ferocious 423kW Jaguar F-TYPE SVR. Also in Class A7 is multiple racing champion Mark Cronjé in Jaguar's new performance flagship, the XJR 575.
With a 5-litre supercharged V8 sending 423kW to the rear wheels through an eight-speed automatic transmission and the ability to launch from 0 to 100km in 4,4 seconds, the XJR 575 is the fastest and most powerful version of the XJ sedan to date.
A well-known name in motorsport, Cronjé's resumé boasts five SA national rally championships and two national off-road titles.
He was crowned Rotax Max World Karting world champion in 2002.
Another Jaguar sports sedan will be entered by Jaguar SA's regional technical manager, Derrick Dearlove, who will contest Class A3 for cars with blown six-cylinder engines in a 2018 model year Jaguar XE S.
In its latest guise, the 3-litre supercharged V6 in the XE S has been upgraded from 250kW to 280kW. The rear-wheel drive XE S can launch from standstill to 100km in 5 seconds.
Jaguar's PACE family of SUVs will also be a highlight of this year's event.
The recently launched E-PACE compact SUV is set to be the first Jaguar SUV to compete at the Jaguar Simola Hillclimb, with video journalist Ciro De Siena of cars.co.za at the wheel.
His entry is an E-PACE P300 with 221kW from its Ingenium petrol turbo engine, standard all-wheel drive and a nine-speed automatic transmission.
Spectators can look forward to a stunning display of precision driving from world-famous stuntman Terry Grant. The multiple world record-holder will wow crowds by driving up the 1,9km Simola Road on two wheels during intermissions, in the same Jaguar F-PACE with which he completed the world's highest loop-the-loop in a car at 19,08m in 2015.
For the second year running, Jaguar SA has afforded two lucky customers the opportunity to drive their own vehicles in anger as competitors at the event. As the winners of a customer experience day held at Kyalami exclusively for F-TYPE owners, Travis Briscoe and Jason Basterfield were the recipients of a prize money can't buy. They won an all-expenses-paid trip to compete at South Africa's premier motorsport event. Both will pilot their own Jaguar F-TYPE S sports cars.
The 2018 Jaguar Simola Hillclimb kicks off with Classic Car Friday on 4 May. On Saturday and Sunday 5 and 6 May, competitors will race up the most-contested stretch of road in the country for the King of the Hill title.
Tickets for the Jaguar Simola Hillclimb start at R120 for day passes and can be purchased here.
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