In the last 15 years, I have owned over a dozen Jaguars and Land Rovers. Like most people in the auto industry, I was very concerned in 2008 when Ford sold these two storied car companies to India-based Tata Motors. However, now five years later, it is clear that Tata has done an outstanding job.
As an example, this week’s review car is the 2013 Jaguar XF Supercharged that is the best XF ever. Jaguar has opened up all-new powertrain options instead of years past when your choices were extremely limited. New for 2013 in the XF is a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder turbo for luxury buyers who want performance and fuel economy. Next up is the 3.0 Supercharged V6 which you can get with all-wheel drive for the first time. You can go all the way to the over 500-horses with the XF-R. Option #4 is the car I have, which is the 5.0-liter V8 Supercharged that is putting out 470-heart pounding horses. All the engine choices come with an 8-speed automatic.
Jaguars are known for their classic exterior beauty as well as their luxurious interiors. Although the XF is the “entry level” Jag, it is anything but that. My tester is a Caviar color officially, but for me it is a chocolate brown shade with tan interior. The 20” wheels and Jag mesh grill make this car a head-turner for everyone who glances at this beauty. Hood louvers add to the sporty and sleek exterior appearance.
As soon as you open the doors, the plushness of the leather seating jumps out at you. You first notice there are no air conditioning vents visible. You also notice the lack of a traditional stick shifter. The result of these two unique features is a clean look that you won’t find on anything else. When you hit the pushbutton start button, the air vents are uncovered and a round gear shift knob appears out of the center stack. There is nothing wildly useful about either of these things, but it sure amazes passengers! When you look up, you’ll see the prettiest suede headliner you have ever laid eyes on. The color touchscreen monitor is vibrant and easy to operate including the navigation system. The home screen tells you everything you could possibly want to know.
The Meridian sound system gives you 380-watts of terrific sound, you get 30 GB of music storage and great Bluetooth connectivity. You get heated and cooled seats, blind spot monitoring system, rear camera, a power moonroof, Xenon headlights, a heated steering wheel, and keyless entry.
The XF Supercharged drives like a dream and handles even better.Acceleration is super strong and steady and will pin you to the seat. Stability control and traction control make the driving dynamics of the XF superb and high performance braking will stop you on a dime. Also new for 2013, is stop/start technology to maximize fuel economy. With the slope of the roof, rear seat headroom is limited, and rear seat legroom is tight. This is a driver’s car, but if you have to put people in the back seat, they will still be smiling, this car brings that out in people. Trunk space is more than ample.
Let me set the record straight on one other thing too. I still hear people say “don’t Jaguars give a lot of trouble?” The answer is no, that stigma still hangs around about Jag and Land Rover but it is simply not true. From my personal experience and feedback from many listeners, these two vehicles are exceptional quality-wise. What I liked most: Exterior and interior appearance, and driving dynamics.
What I would change: Offer me all-wheel with the 5.0-liter.
MSRP: $68,975 base price, as equipped just over $70,000.
Fuel Economy: Rated at 15 in town, 23 highway but doing better than that.
Warranty: 4 years/50,000 mile bumper to bumper INCLUDING complimentary first scheduled maintenance, and roadside assistance.
2013 Jag XF S/C in a few words: OUTSTANDING LUXURY PERFORMANCE CAR!