Mercedes-AMG E63 S Estate vs Jaguar XE SVR Project 8 drag race

Is the limited-edition Jaguar Project 8 faster than a common-or-garden Mercedes-AMG E63 S? There’s only one way to find out.

Tap the video to watch the race.

The Jaguar Project 8 is deeply special. It started life is an innocuous Jaguar XE saloon, which the firm’s Special Vehicle Operations outfit tore apart and rebuilt into a rip-snorting monster. The steroidal wheelarches and massive rear wing are reason enough to love it, but the Project 8 is much more than just a styling exercise.

Under the bonnet is a supercharged, 5.0-litre V8 engine producing 600hp and 700Nm. That’s sent to all four wheels via an eight-speed automatic gearbox. A lot of weight has been stripped out, not least the back seats that have made way for a chunky rollcage, but it still tips the scales at a not-exactly-flyweight 1670kg.

Just 300 examples of the Project 8 were built, priced at an eye-watering £180,000, which means the comparatively common £100,000 Mercedes-AMG E63 S estate is today’s cheap-and-cheerful drag-race contender.

Not that you miss out on… anything, really, by going for the E63. It has back seats and an enormous boot, for a start. And, of course, it’s powered by AMG’s stonking twin-turbo, 4.0-litre V8 engine. In the E63 S it puts out 612hp and 850Nm, which is rather more than the limited-run Jag musters.

But, it does have 1940kg to lug around. Still, four-wheel-drive backed up by a nine-speed automatic gearbox that, unlike the Jag, has launch control, should see the big Merc take off like a scalded cat.

So, place your bets. Can the limited-edition road racer beat the mass-produced family wagon? Watch the video to find out.