it also has the curious ability to make you drive better and with more patience.
As befits a car of this ilk, there is a great deal of gizmology in the Jaguar XKR, and the Jaguar Drive Control is the main interface for these, notably the Dynamic Mode of the Adaptive Dynamics and the Active Differential Control. They are all there to keep you as safe and comfortable as possible and the result is an assured drive. Whether around town or out on the open road, it is this effortlessness that makes it so enjoyably easy to drive.
However, there is a split personality that allows for driving Granny to the shops one day and taking it around a track the next - the Jaguar XKR will do both without batting an eyelid. That is thanks in part to the above-mentioned technology, the general dynamics and agility but mainly due to the grin-inducing 5-litre V8 that burbles away under the bonnet.
Although the size is standard throughout the range, it has been revised and tweaked for more power and better fuel economy. In the Jaguar XK Coupe and Convertible, priced, incidentally, at £59,900 and £65,900 respectively, the petrol engine produces 385PS at 6,500rpm and 515Nm of torque at 3,500rpm. The lightweight aluminium body means that the power to weight ratio is around 232 PS/tonne.
Add the twin vortex system supercharger to the same engine and the figures become 510PS between 6,000 and 6,500rpm with 625Nm of pulling power between 2,500 and 5,500rpm. It can be found in the Jaguar XKR Coupe and Convertible as well as the Portfolio trimmed XKs. It takes approximately 4.8 seconds to complete the 0-62mph dash and the top speed in every case is limited to 155mph, which given the right circumstances comes up very quickly indeed. A mere scrunch of toes on the accelerator is enough to put a grin on your face.
Despite the improvements, it doesn't take long to get through the Jaguar XKR's 71-litre fuel tank. The official figures are posted as: 14.9-, 33.0-, and 23.0 mpg for the urban, extra-urban. That said, anyone who is happy to pay £78,400 for the test car will not be too bothered by the consumption rate. And, as you might expect, the emissions, although Euro5 compliant, are measured at a hefty 292g/km and the insurance is 20E/50E using the old and new rating system.
Even though the Jaguar XKR can be a little more raucous than some of its competitors, it also has the curious ability to make you drive better and with more patience. It is very well equipped and user-friendly and, unlike some of the others, the Jaguar XKR isn't a target for drivers who want to race from every traffic light and generally behave in a belligerent manner. I'm not sure how Jaguar achieved that but we'll have more of the same, please.16 September 2009
Jaguar XKR Road Test Data
|Model Reviewed||Jaguar XKR Convertible SC|
|Performance (manufacturers data)|
|0 - 62 mph||4.8 Seconds|
|Top Speed||155 mph|
|Fuel Type||Unleaded Petrol|
|CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures)||g/km|
|Economy (NEDC Figures)|
|Extra Urban||33 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Rating||TBA|
|Warranty||3 years / Unlimited miles|
|Price (when tested on the 16/09/09)||£78,000|