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Hitch a ride around a racetrack in Jaguar’s 592-hp XE SV Project 8

Jaguar XE SV Project 8 Nürburgring taxi
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Cars are sent to Germany’s Nürburgring racetrack frequently to set lap records, but the closest ordinary people usually get is watching in-car footage on YouTube. But now Jaguar is offering rides around the Nürburgring in its XE SV Project 8 — which holds the lap record for fastest production sedan at the legendary track, according to Jaguar

The Nürburgring is open to the public, so anyone can drive the track for a fee. But over the years various automakers have also provided fast cars to serve as “race taxis,” giving rides to people who don’t have a car, or just want a more skilled professional driver to handle things. The Jaguar XE SV Project 8 is the perfect tool for the job.

In 2017, the car set a lap time of 7:21.23, which Jaguar claimed was a record for a four-door sedan. Subaru previously set a quicker time (6:57.50) with its WRX STI RA NBR Special, but that one-off vehicle hardly qualified as a production car. It was based on a stock WRX STI body shell, but was so extensively modified that it had basically nothing in common with the version people can buy. The XE SV Project 8 was 11 seconds quicker than the next-quickest true production sedan at the ‘Ring, the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio.

Granted, the XE SV Project 8 stretches the definition of “production car.” Only 300 will be made, and it retails for $188,495 in the United States. The car used for the Nürburgring lap record was also a preproduction model, although Jaguar said it was identical in specification to customer cars. The Project 8 was developed by Jaguar’s Special Vehicle Operations (SVO) division, which handles limited-edition models for Jag and sibling brand Land Rover.

As far as thrill rides go, the XE SV Project 8 has roller coasters beat. Based on Jaguar’s entry-level XE sedan, it packs a 5.0-liter supercharged V8 producing 592 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque. Jaguar claims the Project 8 will do zero to 60 mph in 3.3 seconds, and reach a top speed of 200 mph.

If you fancy a ride around the world’s most intense racetrack, laps in the XE SV Project 8 or a Jaguar XJR575 sedan can be booked online now for the 2019 season. Tickets start at 199 euros per lap, or about $227 at current exchange rates.

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Stephen Edelstein
Stephen is a freelance automotive journalist covering all things cars. He likes anything with four wheels, from classic cars…
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