Jaguar XJ Reviews
Model Overview:The XJ comes in several different models--the base XJ, the all-new XJ AWD, the Supercharged and the Supersport. The AWD car features Jaguar's Instinctive All-Wheel Drive system, which continuously monitors driving and road conditions to maximize traction and handling. A long-wheelbase model, the XJL, includes the following trim levels: Portfolio, Portfolio AWD, Supercharged, Supersport, and Ultimate.
Powering the base XJ, XJ AWD, and XJL Portfolio AWD is an all-new supercharged 3.0L V6, which produces 340 hp and delivers an EPA-estimate combined fuel economy of 28 mpg. The rest of the cars in the range derive their power from a 5.0L V8: In the XJL Portfolio it makes 385 hp; in the Supercharged, 470 hp; and in both Supersport and XJL Ultimate it provides 510 hp, which Jaguar claims sufficient for 0-60 mph in just 4.7 seconds.
Power in all XJs is put to the ground through a new ZF 8-speed automatic transmission with Jaguar's sequential shift, which adapts to driving styles and shifts at optimum engine speeds. Gears can also be shifted manually using steering wheel-mounted paddles.
If power is available in spades in the XJ, so too is refinement. Depending on the model, owners can specify up to eleven interior colors and ten elegant veneers to taste, and for leather surfaces, there are eight different colors and three grades. Attractive phosphor blue lines of light illuminate the cabin at night and a handsome analog clock with a spun-metal face sits prominently in the center of the dash.
Interior amenities on the XJ include Jaguar's Smart Key System, with keyless entry and start. Integrated controls on the heated steering wheel allow drivers to access the car's impressive entertainment system and the fully automatic, dual-zone climate control features particle and odor filtration, humidity control and automatic window demisting. In the XJL and all supercharged models, the system is 4-zone to allow individual control for rear passengers as well. Long-wheelbase models incorporate rear business trays in handcrafted wood veneer.
Jaguar loads up the XJ with technology, intended to enhance both its driving capabilities and the experience within the cabin. JaguarDrive Control offers selectable modes for different driving conditions and moods, from slick roads where Winter Mode is required, to back roads where Dynamic Mode works with the suspension for a sportier drive. In the supercharged cars, a sophisticated active differential distributes torque to the rear wheels to suit the traction and current driving dymanics. Adaptive cruise control, standard on Supersport models, employs radar technology to monitor the road ahead and adjust the XJ's following distance while driving with cruise control engaged.
Inside, Jaguar iTech features an interactive HD touchscreen with navigation, virtual instruments, interactive voice controls and a media hub. A 380-watt, 14-speaker Meridian stereo system is standard, while an 825-watt, 20-speaker surround system comes in top models. A rear seat entertainment system allows passengers to watch DVDs or listen to music stored in the car's hard disk.
Safety is paramount in the new XJ, rooted in the car's aluminum and magnesium bodyshell. A bevy of airbags and active seatbelts help protect all occupants in the event of a crash, while an advanced anti-lock braking system helps drivers avoid accidents in the first place.
Model Changes:For 2013, Jaguar has revamped the powertrain in its XJ sport sedan. Standard XJs and all-new all-wheel drive models will run on an all-new supercharged 3.0L V6. The unit develops 340 hp, which is about 45 fewer horses than its 5.0L V8 predecessor. However, the V6 improves the XJ's fuel economy, with an EPA combined 28 mpg now estimated. The V8 continues in upper-level models Additionally, a new ZF 8-speed automatic transmission joins the mix, to replace the previous 6-speed. The combination is good enough to get the XJ from 0 to 60 mph in 5.7 seconds, according to Jaguar, with an electronically controlled top speed of 155 mph.
The V8 carries on in XJ/XJL Supercharged and Supersport trims, as well as the XJL Ultimate. Finally, Meridian sound systems replace the previous Bowers & Wilkins audio on all models.
Model Value:The Jaguar XJ has always been a premium symbol of ultimate automotive luxury. Prices start at under $74,000, but that buys a smooth, powerful drivetrain as well as a specific kind of comfort and elegant, understated style that has always been emblematic of the XJ--the kind unavailable from BMW, Audi or Cadillac.