Mike Stevens | Nov 17, 2011

Jaguar's topless range-topper has made its international debut at this week's LA Auto Show, giving sunlovers an alternative to the XKR-S Coupe that launched earlier this year.

Like the hardtop, the XKR-S Convertible gets a bunch of styling and aerodynamic add-ons to set it apart from the lesser models, along with the best reason to buy a car with no roof: a great bellowing 405kW and 680Nm supercharged 5.0 litre V8.

The Convertible gives nothing away to the madhat Coupe: Jaguar says it will hit 100km/h in 4.4 seconds, and top speed is 300km/h. The same, then, as the hardtop.

Handling should be pretty close to the Coupe also, with Jag promising "extremely high torsional rigidity" from the aluminium architecture. Just to be sure, there XKR-S team added reinforced rear suspension damper mounts.

"Because the XK was designed as a convertible it has great structural integrity. This allowed us to apply the XKR-S coupe's sporting suspension settings to create a convertible with no compromises," XKR-S Chief Engineer Mike Cross said.

"Its blend of great speed, precision and dynamism is given an extra dimension with the roof down and that thrilling exhaust soundtrack."

The Convertible's front and rear suspension has been upgraded to match the XKR-S Coupe, and there's 20-inch "Vulcan" alloy wheels at each corner.

As with the Coupe, there's a leather-appointed cabin with a choice of dark aluminium or piano-black highlights. The seats are 16-way power adjustable, and there's a three-spoke multifunction leather-wrapped and heated steering wheel.

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