Jaguar XJ Review (2011)
The new XJ is the 4-door flagship model for Jaguar and incorporates daring new styling, standard- and long-wheelbase models from launch and advanced new technologies4 March 2011
The original XJ was the last car designed by Jaguar founder Sir William Lyons and the latest car to wear the nameplate is as innovative, beautiful and desirable as its famous forebear. Launched in May 2010 the new Jaguar XJ is described by Jaguar as 'sleek, sporting and sophisticated' and that it 'is a thoroughly modern interpretation of the quintessential Jaguar'.
The new XJ is the 4-door flagship model for Jaguar and incorporates daring new styling, standard- and long-wheelbase models from launch and advanced new technologies.
We tested the Jaguar XJ 3.0L diesel Portfolio SWB (short-wheel base) with an OTR price tag of £66,500.
Jaguar offers a choice of 4 engines (depending on the market), a 3.0-litre 275PS diesel AJ-V6D Gen III diesel with twin sequential turbochargers – 0-60mph in 6.0 seconds. A 5.0-litre petrol engine offering 3 power outputs the 385PS AJ-V8 Gen III naturally aspirated direct-injection V8 petrol - 0-60mph in 5.4 seconds, the 470PS AJ-V8 Gen III supercharged V8 direct-injection petrol - 0-60mph in 4.9 seconds and the 510PS AJ-V8 Gen III supercharged V8 direct-injection petrol - 0-60mph in 4.7 seconds. All engines are all coupled to a shift-by-wire, six-speed automatic transmission controlled by the JaguarDrive Selector or steering wheel-mounted paddles.
The automatic transmission is controlled by the JaguarDrive selector, the driver simply turns the selector to engage transmission settings, or to move from Drive to Sport mode. JaguarDrive Control also offers Dynamic mode which results in more responsive acceleration and adds a red hue and gear position indicator to the Virtual Instruments display. Winter mode gives more progressive control in slippery conditions.
Our test car was fitted with the 3.0-litre 275PS AJ-V6D Gen III diesel engine which incorporates cutting-edge technologies to deliver seamless performance with exceptional efficiency. A key feature of the new V6 diesel engine is the unique, 'parallel sequential' turbocharger system delivering high torque throughout the rev range, improved throttle response and low CO2 emissions. The turbochargers work sequentially to deliver low speed torque, while delivering further power up the rev band. The new engine is 33 per cent more powerful at 275PS, the 0-60 mph sprint is completed in 6.0 seconds and the electronically governed top speed is 155mph.
Fuel economy is impressive with Jaguar quoting a combined figure of 40.1mpg which we think is realistic, (we returned 50mpg on the motorway) and CO2 emissions of 184g/km.
What is noticeable about the Jaguar XJ is the balance between performance and fuel economy from such a large vehicle.
Ride and Handling
The new Jaguar XJ's on-road credentials are superb and for a large saloon car it proved amazingly agile. Minimal body-roll and high levels of grip certainly result in an entertaining driving experience.
The speed sensitive power steering is excellent resulting in remarkable handling. Adaptive Dynamics analyse the XJ's speed, steering and body movements 500 times a second and adjust the suspension with electronic dampers to achieve the ideal balance between comfort and precise handling. Ride quality always remains composed and the XJ rides effortlessly over even the poorest of road surfaces.
JaguarDrive Control offers three different settings normal, winter and dynamic modes. Dynamic mode makes the throttle pedal more responsive, stiffens the suspension and sharpens the steering.
Jaguar XJ Road Test Data
|Model Reviewed||Jaguar XJ 3.0 Portfolio|
|Performance (manufacturers data)|
|0 - 62 mph||6.4 secs|
|CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures)||g/km|
|Economy (NEDC Figures)|
|Extra Urban||50 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Rating||TBC|
|Warranty||3 years / Unlimited miles|
|Price (when tested on the 04/03/11)||£66,500 OTR price excluding options|