Jaguar XF review
Jaguar's latest XF is desirable and very good to drive, making it a genuine rival to the German alternatives
Jaguar has borrowed much of what makes the smaller XE such a desirable compact executive car to make the XF saloon comfortable, refined and good to drive.
Lightweight aluminium construction and a range of efficient engines help the XF deliver decent but not brilliant running costs for company car users, while the car benefits from Jaguar's proven handling know-how to deliver a composed and engaging driving experience.
Sharp styling, a strong range of engines and an engaging chassis mean the XF is well worth considering as an alternative to its German rivals. A facelift in 2020 brought a fresh exterior look, while upgrades to interior trim and on-board tech ensure the XF is ready to do battle with the best executive saloons on the market.
The Jaguar XF that arrived in 2007 was the first car for sale in Jaguar dealers that saw the British company move away from the retro looks of past models to a new, more modern appearance. The first XF saloon, as well as the XF Sportbrake estate and high-performance XFR, was replaced by the XF Mk2 in 2015. It maintained the original car's luxury, but offered a sharper look and greater efficiency.
As with the original car, the XF is for sale as a four-door saloon or XF Sportbrake estate. Jaguar has streamlined its engine lineup to include a 201bhp 2.0-litre diesel with mild-hybrid technology, along with a 2.0-litre petrol unit in two states of tune: the P250 delivering 247bhp via the rear wheels and the P300 with 296bhp and an all-wheel-drive set-up. The oil burner is available as either a rear-wheel or all-wheel-drive version.
Prices for the XF start from around £32,500 for the saloon, with the XF Sportbrake costing around £2,000 extra.
Chief opponents for the XF are the Audi A6, BMW 5 Series and Mercedes E-Class, although the Volvo S90 majors on comfort, while the Lexus ES has replaced the GS in the Japanese line-up and the Maserati Ghibli is a leftfield choice if you want something sporty. If you're a company car buyer, then perhaps a Tesla Model S could be considered as a rival, too.
Back to the XF and, as with the engine range, Jaguar has decided on a reduced list of available trim levels. The rear-wheel-drive cars feature an entry-level S equipment level, while R-Dynamic S, R-Dynamic SE and R-Dynamic HSE make up the rest of the equipment options.
In this review
- 1Verdict - currently readingJaguar's latest XF is desirable and very good to drive, making it a genuine rival to the German alternatives
- 2Engines, performance and driveThe XF remains sporty and engaging to drive, particularly in P300 petrol form
- 3MPG, CO2 and Running CostsNew diesel mild-hybrid tech helps to improve economy for the XF, but it still lags behind the best in class
- 4Interior, design and technologyModern design, plenty of tech and extra space make the XF a great place to sit
- 5Practicality, comfort and boot spaceA big boot, plenty of space and a comfortable ride mean the XF covers many bases
- 6Reliability and SafetyStrong standard safety kit and good Driver Power results bode well for the XF