The diesel-engined Jaguar S-TYPE is offered with a choice of a 6-speed ZF automatic or a new 6-speed ZF manual transmission.
How It Drove - Performance
The diesel-engined Jaguar S-TYPE is offered with a choice of a 6-speed ZF automatic or a new 6-speed ZF manual transmission. The transmissions are developed to maximise both the performance and flexibility of the twin-turbo V6 engine.
Car manufacturers are always telling us that you won’t believe that you are driving a diesel car and every time we have thought are you hard of hearing. Well that was until we drove the Jaguar S-TYPE 2.7 V6 diesel, which is refined, powerful and above all exceptionally quiet. Of course you know it is a diesel as diesel engines have different characteristics to petrol engines - but it is undoubtedly a class leading one.
On the move it is easy to forget that you are driving a diesel car only occasionally on a cold start or with the window down do you hear the characteristic diesel chatter. In fact the delivery driver who had driven the car over 200 miles to our offices had to be stopped from filling it with petrol. Hopefully this says more about the engine than the driver.
We agree with Jaguar that the engine’s specification does make impressive reading. The four-cam, 24-valve, twin-turbo V6 features the second generation common-rail direct injection and super-fast piezo-electric injector operation. Maximum power from the 2.7 litre engine is 206bhp (153kw) DIN, putting the S-TYPE ahead of all but one of its rivals. Torque peaks at a heady 320lb ft (435Nm) DIN, which is actually higher than that of the S-TYPE’s naturally aspirated 4.2 litre V8 petrol engine, yet the Diesel has 47 per cent better fuel consumption. More crucially still, 80 per cent of this torque is available from just 1500 rev/min, all the way through to 4000 rev/min - which makes for interesting acceleration.
We took the Jaguar from our Devon base to the Yorkshire Dales for a short break, and on average we saw over 35 mpg, which is very near to Jaguar’s own figures. The journey was a mixture of Motorways for necessity, ‘B’ roads for the fun of it and country lanes for the beauty. Even when exploring the S-TYPE's performance on deserted Yorkshire roads, the fuel consumption rarely dipped below 25 mpg.
The diesel S-TYPE automatic maybe economical but it is no slouch either, Jaguar quotes a 0-62 mph of 8.2 seconds, with a terminal speed of 141 mph - which feels about right.
Our test car was fitted with Jaguar’s famous ‘J Gate’ 6-speed automatic transmission with sports mode and manual selection. It is a traditional automatic with six ratios and an adaptive Mechatronic shift, which responds to both road conditions and the way the car is being driven, to give the smoothest gear shifts. Our only criticism is that when using the gearbox is in its manual mode, there isn't any indication on the dashboard of which gear you are in and without looking down it is too easy to select the wrong gear. Having said that how often are you going to flap about with the manual mode the car is simply superb left to its own devices.
How It Drove - Ride and Handling
The latest generation S-TYPE body shell is 10 per cent stiffer than the original car and the modified S-TYPE diesel's suspension produces a smoother more consistent ride. Sport models feature lowered sports suspension with optimised springs and uprated dampers and 18" X8 Triton cast alloy wheels.
We were surprised by how agile the S-TYPE is, even on demanding Yorkshire ‘B’ roads, little destroyed our confidence in the S-TYPE’s capability. Body roll is minimal and on dry roads you would have to be doing something very daft or illegal to come unstuck. Only occasionally in the wet did the rear wheel drive Jaguar moan before the traction control system, tamed its tail.
The ride is firm yet comfortable for occupants and only the most vicious of pot holes upset ride quality, even Yorkshire’s cobbled back lanes did little to upset the ride.
Jaguar S-TYPE Road Test Data
|Model Reviewed||Jaguar S-TYPE 2.7 V6 Diesel Sport|
|Body Type||4-Door Saloon|
|Performance (manufacturers data)|
|0 - 62 mph||8.6 Seconds|
|Top Speed||141 mph|
|CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures)||g/km|
|Economy (NEDC Figures)|
|Extra Urban||46.5 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Rating||TBA|
|Warranty||3-Year unlimited mileage warranty|
|Price (when tested on the 10/04/05)||£ 31,995 OTR|