JAG XJ AT TOP OF CLASS
Jaguar’s big sedan has been brought back up to speed, writes PETER BARNWELL
JAGUAR has taken too long to make its midlife revamp the XJ large sedan — about six years — but it has been busy building a raft of completely new cars.
The stylish dropped off radar for many buyers update should bring it front and centre.
Designed about eight years ago, the XJ missed much of the wave of technology in intervening years. To its flagship almost up with competition, Jag was able to fit radar cruise control with queue assist — which can bring car a complete stop traffic and take off when the car in front moves but automatic emergency braking head-up display are not available.
The XJ range has short longwheelbase variants with three engines and a handful of equipment levels. There is ample street cred, no matter which model you choose.
Styling guru Ian Callum produced something out the box. The XJ has huge presence on road and projects an ultra classy image, almost up there with a Bentley.
low arcing roofline and aggressive frontal treatment give the
look. There is an innocuous styling tweak for the rear, which with its oddshaped LED lighting might be somewhat polarising.
In cabin, so-called Riva (boat) style curved dash runs from the front door caps along bottom of windscreen. Controls and instruments are set low out of way.
The new controls are simple to operate, especially the touchscreen, and the layout is easy on eye.
We spent (quality) time in the rear of the supercharged V6 and XJ-R V8. This is where you want to be — some time. Your right hand twitches, ready execute royal wave as luxuriate supple leather oak inlays surrounded by 1300W of Meridian audio.
This is a big pussycat, though, and would be problematic to park in the city, even with the aid of semiautomated assist 360-degree camera. The boot is good and access is reasonable despite the low roofline of the big four-door.
Multiple adjustments to most controls make XJ easy customise to your requirements we really appreciated fast Bluetooth synch and voice quality.
Fuel economy takes a hit around town but that is not likely to be an issue for owners. The super punchy diesel could be the remedy if thirst is issue.
It is quiet and refined at all times as you waft along in a luxury bubble.
Having sampled the petrol V6 and V8, we were surprised by how handy the V6 all applications. We cruised, commuted, traffic jammed, country roaded and generally swanned about in “base” model
really, it is you need an XJ. You can scarcely hear it under full acceleration the eight-speed auto is smooth as silk.
Tidy dynamics make car all the better and in terms of fittings and options, well, how much is too much?
That brings us to XJ-R — aspirational beast new XJ range.
Jag’s aluminium chassis body save some weight but you are still looking at 1800kg-1900kg. With 404kW on tap, know it is going to have serious mumbo.
Jag has allowed V8 rumble penetrate the otherwise muted, full luxury cabin, which adds the XJ-R’s allure.
They are impressive cars in just about all respects, a touch dated but still with plenty of cut-through on street.
Shop an XJ against any prestige candidates.