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Jaguar's new cat ready to pounce

Luxe cat: Jag says XF recalls its saloons of yesteryear, without being retro.

Full Australian specs for Jaguar's all-new XF have been revealed - eight months early

10 Oct 2007

JAGUAR has issued full Australian specifications for its all-new XF luxury sedan, some eight months before it replaces the S-Type here - in June 2008.

The unexpected news, revealed at an Australian-first preview of the vital new Jaguar hosted by chief designer Ian Callum, was announced not at this week's Sydney motor show opening but nearby on the previous day at private functions for journalists, dealers and prospective customers.

Making its global public debut at last month's Frankfurt motor show and based on the C-XF concept car, the XF is Mr Callum's first fully self-designed Jaguar model. It aims to reflect the heritage of Jaguar's trademark sedan – without being retro.

While outgoing S-Type was embraced by Jaguarphiles, its similarities to its original namesake polarised opinion.

“The XF is a sporting saloon that harks back to Jaguar's past, but makes a fashion statement with its far more contemporary shape – it is what people want,” said Jaguar Australia product manager Andrew Chapman.

6 center imageAppearing far more convincing in the metal than in pictures, the XF may have lost the C-XF concept's super-low roofline and menacingly flat-browed headlights, but retains a coupe-like profile with a distinctive wedge shape, highlighted by a design crease that runs around the entire body.

Aggressive, modern design cues include wide wheel tracks, short overhangs, D-pillars set far inboard from the rear wheels and a fastback-style rear-end in which the bootlid continues the same profile as the rear screen.

Historic Jaguar styling elements abound within the modern shape and proportion, however, including a recesssed mesh grille inspired by the Series I XJ6 of 1968, quad headlights and a fluted bonnet with prominent power bulge.

Inside there is comfortable stadium-style seating for four adults, with the heavily bucketed rear seat sacrificing centre-rear occupant comfort. Rear legroom is generous, but rear foot space is poor.

Jaguar says a full-size 500-litre boot, made more flexible by a 60/40-split folding rear seat, as well as head, shoulder and knee room, are competitive in the large luxury segment that includes formidable German foes like the BMW 5 Series, Mercedes-Benz E-class and Audi's A6. A space-saving 18-inch alloy temporary spare resides under the big boot floor.

Of course, woodgrain trim highlights are plentiful, but unique and modern touches include the JaguarDrive Selector, which looks and feels like a BMW i-Drive controller but pops up from the console to allow selection between Park, Reverse, Neutral, Drive and Sport transmission modes. Actual gearshifting (all variants will feature a six-speed automatic transmission) is carried out via steering wheel paddles.

A start/stop button also glows when the car is unlocked, while four rotating air-vents roll open in impressive unison. A standard seven-inch colour touch-screen operates most vehicle functions, leaving the dash uncluttered, functional and classy.

Another neat touch is a glovebox that opens and overhead lights that switch on or off at the touch of a sensor, in another new system dubbed JaguarSense.

The XF rides on a 2909mm wheelbase and is 4961mm long, 1877mm wide and 1460mm high. Three trim levels will be offered across four engine engine options, headed by the flagship of the XF range (at least until the widely-rumoured “XF-R” emerges), the SV8.

Shown in Sydney and the only XF variant to receive a rear-end badge, the SV8 is powered by a 306kW/560Nm supercharged 4.2-litre V8 that also sees duty in the XJR, XKR and Range Rover models. It sprints to 100km/h a claimed 5.4 seconds, has a limited 250km/h top speed, weighs a substantial 1842kg, returns ADR 81/01 combined fuel consumption of 12.6L/100km and emits 299g/km of CO2 emissions.

One step down is the 219kW/411Nm naturally-aspirated 4.2-litre V8-powered XF, simply dubbed the 4.2 V8. It sprints to 100km/h a claimed 6.5 seconds, also has a limited 250km/h top speed, weighs almost 100kg less at 1749kg, returns ADR 81/01 combined fuel consumption of 11.1L/100km and emits 264g/km of CO2 emissions.

Two more carryover engines will be available in the 2.7D and the 3.0 V6. The former is powered by a 152kW/435Nm 2.7-litre turbo-diesel V6 and the latter by a 175kW/293Nm 3.0-litre petrol V6. The 3.0 V6 is the lightest of the bunch at 1679kg (almost 100kg less than the 2.7D, which tips the scales at 1771kg), but takes one-tenth longer to hit 100km/h – 8.3 versus 8.2 seconds.

But the 2.7D has the lowest top speed (229km/h), the lowest fuel consumption (7.5L/100km) and the lowest emissions (199g/km), while the 3.0 V6 V-maxes at a claimed 237km/h, and returns a 10.5L/100km ADR 81/01 figure and CO2 emissions of 249g/km. Maximum un/braked towing capacity is 750kg/1850kg respectively and the turning circle for the speed-sensitive variable-ratio steering system is a tight 11.48 metres.

As with the Luxury versions of the current S-Type, pricing for both the identically specified XF 2.7D and XF 3.0 V6 is expected to start just above $100,000, and to extend to about $180,000. Given the high level of standard equipment, there will be no sub-$90,000 entry-level XF.

Standard across the range is twin front, front side and side curtain airbags, stability/traction control, ABS with EBD, EBA and CBC, an electric parking brake, LED tail-lights, heated/power mirrors, power windows, auto-off headlights, rain-sensing wipers, remote central locking, dead locking, rear parking sensors, satellite-navigation, Bluetooth connectivity, triple front and twin rear cup-holders, dual-zone climate-control, cruise control with speed-limiter, keyless starting, power front seat and steering wheel adjustment, driver's seat memory, an eight-speaker 140-Watt sound system with six-CD changer and “Bond Grain” leather-faced seats, dash and door trims.

All this is included in the basic “Luxury” grade for 2.7D and 3.0 V6 variants, which ride on “Venus” 18 x 8.5-inch alloy wheels.

Moving up a trim level, the 4.2 V8's “Premium Luxury” specification adds, as standard: metallic paint, folding and auto-dimming wing mirrors with puddle lights, “Auriga” 19 x 8.5-inch alloys, a rear parking camera, “Softgrain” leather trim, “Burr Walnut” veneer, keyless entry, carpet mats, a 320-Watt “Premium” sound system and bi-Xenon headlights with cornering lamps, washers and auto-levelling.

Finally, the XF 4.2 S/C adds Computer Active tehcnology Suspension (CATS), a “Dynamic” automatic transmission mode, tyre pressure monitoring, “Volans” 20 x 8.5-inch front and 20 x 9.5-inch rear alloys, heated/cooled front seats with 16/12-way power adjustment, “Rich Oak” veneer, a 440-Watt Bowers & Wilkins surround-sound system, “JaguarVoice” recognition system, a digital/analogue TV tuner and “Premium” carpet mats.

Options include a sunroof, steering wheel heating, adaptive cruise control, electric rear window blind and a blind-spot monitor, as seen on Volvo's flagship S80. Four colour choices will be available for both the seats/lower fascia and upper fascia.

Read more:

First look: Jag lets its new cat out of the bag

First look: Jaguar concept leaps ahead of the pack


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