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#10

in Super Luxury Cars

MSRP: $74,200 - $119,000
Invoice: $68,264 - $109,390
MPG: 18 City / 27 Hwy
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Jaguar XJ Performance

The automotive press agrees that the 2014 Jaguar XJ offers agile handling that few cars in the class can match. More than one test driver says that the 2014 XJ drives like a smaller, sportier car, while others note that the XJ offers a powerful base engine and a refined automatic transmission.

  • "On the road, the Jaguar XJ is one of the most engaging full-size luxury sedans on the market. These cars are often driven by chauffeurs, but we've met bigwigs who like to drive themselves, and for them the XJ is a natural choice." -- AutoTrader 
  • "… the XJR is the obvious choice for the insatiable performance enthusiast. Of course, the supercharged V6 that debuted last year will suit most buyers just fine given its respectable fuel economy and available all-wheel drive for cold weather areas." -- Edmunds
  • "Just like the V-8 XJs, the V-6 model feels nimbler and livelier than many smaller, supposedly sportier cars. That's a credit to both its lightweight aluminum construction and the masterful chassis tuning Jaguar seems to do better than anyone else." -- Automobile Magazine (2013)
  • "This car is sorted, and feels smaller than it is where it counts, from behind the wheel." -- Motor Trend (2013)

Acceleration and Power

The 2014 Jaguar XJ is powered by a 340-horsepower, supercharged 3.0-liter V6 engine. An eight-speed automatic transmission is standard on all models. The EPA reports that the base Jaguar XJ gets 18/27 mpg city/highway, which is typical for a six-cylinder super luxury car. More powerful engine options are available, which include supercharged 5.0-liter V8s that produce 470 and 550 horsepower in Supercharged and XJR models, respectively.

Reviewers say that the XJ’s supercharged V6 provides plenty of power, while Supercharged and XJR models offer a tremendous amount of muscle and blistering acceleration. The transmission also earns praise from a few reviewers who note that its shifts are nearly imperceptible in normal driving situations.

  • "The supercharged V6 is nice enough and gets much better fuel economy (with rear-wheel drive), but the siren call of those V8s would be too much for us to resist. Acceleration in the XJ Supercharged and XJR is astounding in both force and immediacy." -- AutoTrader
  • "The supercharged V6 offers fuel economy on par with the class (nearly identical to the Audi A8, for example), pulls more effortlessly than the base model V8 it replaced and will hit the sweet spot for most buyers. It sounds great, too." -- Edmunds
  • "Keep the engine in the power band and it's more than capable of handling any traffic situation with ease. When loping around town, simply dial it back to D and the tranny seamlessly runs the gears up and down the ratios." -- Motor Trend (2013)
  • "The new base V6 has a supercharger and counter-rotating balance shafts, and strikes a good balance of power, smoothness and fuel efficiency." -- Kelley Blue Book (2013)

Handling and Braking

The 2014 Jaguar XJ comes standard with rear-wheel drive. All-wheel drive is available on the base XJ and XJL Portfolio models. Most test drivers say that the 2014 XJ offers athletic handling, which is bolstered by strong brakes and steering that’s light, but precise. Still, some reviewers note that the XJ’s steering could offer more feedback, and that the brake pedal seems too sensitive at times. A few critics think that the Jaguar XJ rides more firmly than some of its classmates, but they say that it’s still comfortable and composed over imperfect roads.

  • "Under normal commuting conditions, the XJ has a tauter ride than some in this class, but it filters out harsh impacts satisfactorily. Similarly, while road and wind noise aren't whisper quiet at speed, few will object to the XJ's sound levels, especially considering the sweet noises emanating from either of the V8 engines." -- AutoTrader 
  • "The Jaguar image is one of effortless pace, and the 2014 XJ's gracious road manners don't disappoint. Jaguar retuned the suspension last year to improve ride quality, and indeed, the big sedan rides well, even with larger wheels and tires. Aluminum construction makes the XJ lighter than it looks, and the Jag has an agility that most rivals can't match." -- Edmunds
  • "The steering is light yet communicative, and the suspension holds tight in sharp corners without exacting a harsh price over bumps. Only when the roads narrow to oh-my-gosh-there's -a-car-coming-from-the-other-direction-and-its-about-to-shear-off-my-right-mirror width does the XJ feel like a large car." -- Automobile Magazine (2013)
  • "Light steering may be short on feel but it makes for easy low-speed maneuvering. The brakes, though strong enough, have a light, overly sensitive pedal that can be tricky." -- Kelley Blue Book (2013)
Review Last Updated: 5/19/14

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