GoAutoLogo
MENU

Car reviews - Jaguar - XK - XKR range

Our Opinion

We like
Engine sound, mid-range acceleration, ride quality, quality interior, comfort, convertible experience, styling (especially the coupe), non-intrusive traction control
Room for improvement
Convertible looks, risk of roof damage, road noise, rear seat legroom, tail-light design

Jaguar logo23 Apr 2007

ASSESSING cars is a tricky business because, no matter how analytical you are, there are many aspects that affect the overall enjoyment of a car that simply cannot be measured – like looks and feel and even sound.

In the case of the new Jaguar XKR, one of the most appealing characteristics is the engine note, a guttural roar when you open the throttle that excites and delights. If ever a Jaguar sounded like a jaguar, then this is it.

Blessed with an active exhaust system that controls the sound so that you can cruise in quiet comfort while still enjoying the aural delight under acceleration, this unmeasurable quality is a good reason on its own to buy the XKR – especially the convertible version.

Even hardened motoring writers on the press launch were seen playing with the throttle and trying to find tunnels to maximise the thrill of hearing this wonderful sound and some Jaguar folk are said to have it as their mobile phone ring tone. It’s that good.

The superb supercharged 4.2-litre V8 engine in the second-generation XKR has been around for a while now, but has been refined to produce a little more power (up 8kW to 306kW at 6250rpm)) and torque (up 7Nm to some 560Nm at 4000rpm) that gives it extra urge, especially in the mid-range.

Overall performance has really gained through a reduction in weight for the big cat, which benefits – as did the regular XK models introduced almost a year ago – from the introduction of an aluminium monocoque chassis in place of the previous steel chassis.

The result is a car that weighs between 70kg (coupe) and 100kg (coupe) than the previous model and is consequently faster off the mark and generally more agile.

Acceleration to 100km/h is quick if not breathtaking (5.2 seconds), but the mid-range response is very strong, making overtaking a breeze on country roads. Jaguar claims it takes only 2.5 seconds to race from 80 to 110km/h, which is 25 per cent faster than the regular non-supercharged XK.

There are faster coupes and convertibles on the road for those wanting that performance edge, but we never found ourselves wanting for more urge on a lengthy drive around the Hunter Valley.

Performance is aided by a sharper-changing six-speed ZF automatic transmission that was a delight to use.

One minute it provided seamless changes in keeping with a luxury cruiser and the next, with a jab of the throttle or by flicking it into Sport mode, the changing regime took on an extra urgency, snapping into the next gear or automatically double declutching down for a tight hairpin.

Driving the convertible is a sheer delight, even without the extra buffeting protection of the optional wind deflector. The wind is well controlled, there is no trouble holding a normal conversation and you get to hear that wonderful sound.

The structural integrity is superb, with no scuttle shake at all, even on rough roads, and only a mild amount of feedback through the steering to remind you that you are driving effectively a high-speed bathtub. There’s no reason to doubt Jaguar’s claims of high torsional rigidity.

Ride and handling levels, aided by Jag’s active suspension system, are superb. The Jaguar engineers have come up with a lovely balance between cornering performance, which is still very high and easily controllable while absorbing road irregularities with real poise.

With the roof up, there is no ‘booming’ and you never feel as though there is only a layer of material above your head.

Only a fairly high level of road noise spoils the driving experience, no doubt caused by those massive wheels and low-profile tyres. Such is the price of looking great.

The coupe is naturally much quieter inside, but there is still a fair bit of road noise and, of course, you do not get the same aural experience from the exhaust note.

Again, the ride is excellent and the ultimate grip level is probably higher than on the convertible if you are inclined to explore the outer limits.

The interior has a feeling of real quality, as you would expect, and we liked the contemporary feel of the aluminium weave panels, though more traditional Jag buyers might still prefer the burr walnut.

The seats are very supportive and have an enormous range of adjustment while the steering wheel has electric adjustment for both height and reach, so drivers of all sizes should be able to find the perfect seating position (provided they do not have a passenger trying to squeeze into the rear seat).

Click to share

Click below to follow us on
Facebook  Twitter  Instagram

Enquire on or Test Drive a New XK

Customer Terms and Conditions – New Car Lead enquires

Agreement

This is an agreement between GoAutoMedia Pty Limited ACN 094 732 457 of PO Box 18, Beach Road, Sandringham, VIC, 3191 (“we/us”), the owner and operator of the GoAuto.com.au website (“the website”) and the person wanting GoAuto.com.au to provide them with a lead for the purchase of a new car (“you”).

By completing a New Car Lead Enquiry, you agree to the terms and conditions and disclaimers and acknowledge the policies set out below.

Terms and Conditions

  • In order for us to effect a lead you must you must complete a New Car Lead Enquiry (“Enquiry”).
  • We will call you as soon as possible after you complete the Enquiry and certainly no later than the next business day. When we call, we will discuss with you your new car requirements.
  • You consent to our passing on the Enquiry and your requirements to an appropriate authorised motor car dealer as a lead.
  • We will contact you again in approximately eight days following your initial enquiry to check on the progress of the Enquiry.
  • While we will provide the dealer with the Enquiry and details of your new car requirements, we take no responsibility for what happens after passing on that material as a lead.
  • You acknowledge that we are a new car information service providing new car editorial information, pictures and prices to our customers as a guide only. Any new car prices published on the website are the manufacturers’ recommended retail prices and do not include delivery charges and on-road costs. Any authorized motor car dealer to which we pass on your Enquiry as a lead will provide you with full details of the price at which the vehicle will be sold to you.
  • You acknowledge that we do not sell motor vehicles. Any sale of a new car to you by a dealer after we have passed on your Enquiry to that dealer as a lead, is a sale by that dealer not by us.

Privacy Policy– New Car Lead Enquires

  • We take privacy very seriously. We understand that you will only complete an Enquiry if you can trust us to protect your personal information and use it appropriately. Our policy is to ensure that the personal information collected when you make an Enquiry is only used for the purposes of connecting you with an authorised motor car dealer.
  • We do not on-sell information collected from you or any other customer.
  • From time to time, we may email you with information or promotions that may be relevant for car buyers. You will continue to receive communications from us unless you tell us that you do not want to receive any advertising or promotional information in the future by unsubscribing from these communications.
close
* Denotes required field
** Australian inquiries only
*** Prices exclude on road costs and dealer delivery fees

Motor industry news

GoAutoNews is Australia’s number one automotive industry journal covering the latest news, future and new model releases, market trends, industry personnel movements, and international events.