Bertone Jaguar B99 Concept/B99GT - Geneva Auto Show
Offering an independent Italian perspective on a new generation of classy cat, the Bertone Jaguar B99 Concept formally bowed in at Geneva with a full-race GT2-spec variant at its side. The B99's code name reflects 99 years of Bertone's existence as a premier design house and coachbuilder, but the fairly dramatic departure of this BMW 3 Series-sized sedan from Jaguar's current breed opens the door for some intriguing possibilities regarding the look of the sub-XF four-door the automaker plans to add to its family in the 2013/2014 time window. However, Automotive News reports that automaker's Global Brand Director, Adrian Hallmark has indicated that upcoming model will not be based on this Bertone one-off.
The Bertone Jaguar B99 Concept does embody cues that pay obvious homage to several classic Jags of yore. The fluid lines and elegant proportions seen in its hand-formed aluminum bodywork are crowned by a retro-XJ-style greenhouse while the historic "leaper" returns to its hood. However, the B99 Concept's long, narrow lighting units -- front and rear -- represent a serious rethink of current Jaguar design.
The same all-new approach holds true for the Bertone Jaguar B99 Concept's hybrid powertrain. Developed by Bertone Energy, this Extended Range Hybrid system matches a 1.4-liter/170-horsepower gasoline engine/generator with twin rear-mounted 201-horse Lucchi electric motors powered by lithium-ion battery packs. Collectively, the system turns out 579 horsepower and allows the car to travel up to 62 miles in pure EV mode.
Bertone also served up a racing version of this futuristic Jaguar. The B99 GT retains the hood, doors, decklid and greenhouse of the street car but gets a widebody treatment to help it house wide 19-inch alloy wheels wrapped in 325/30 race rubber. In addition to a host of other normal aero tweaks, the B99 GT is fitted with a two additional electric motors on the front wheels to endow this all-wheel-drive version with a stout 972 horses.