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Jaguar’s LWB lets loose

Choice: The LWB offers customers the choice of fixed or powered bench or twin chairs, with heating availability.

Jaguar stretches its largest sedan, the XJ, with a long-wheelbase version

30 Nov 2004

JAGUAR has released a long-wheelbase version (LWB) of its largest sedan, the XJ series.

A 7mm increase in height (and a corresponding widening of the rear doors to help better integrate the stretch) also accompanies the extension, which is 125mm over the standard XJ’s 3033mm.

A revised grille and redesigned alloy wheels also help distinguish the flagship Jaguars.

Two models are now available:  $194,900 XJ8 4.2 LWB
 $234,900 Super V8 LWB The former uses a 224kW (at 6000rpm) and 420Nm (at 4100rpm) version of the 4.2-litre V8 married to a ZF six-speed automatic gearbox.

This same transmission is also applied to the Super V8’s supercharged 4.2 V8, which pumps out 298kW of power at 6100rpm and 553Nm of torque at 3500rpm.

The LWB’s 0-100km/h times are 6.6 (4.2 V8) and 5.3 (Super V8) on their way to a 250km/h speed limited V-max.

All of the extra length has landed behind the B-pillar, to maximise rear seat legroom. It now boasts 999mm of it.

Jaguar says the LWB models are the longest in its class, which includes the Audi A8, BMW 7 Series and Mercedes S-class.

But the weight increase has been contained to 24kg, which is comfortably below (between 100-200kg) the differences in mass its rival LWB models have accrued compared to their standard wheelbase stablemates.

This makes the 1640kg XJ 4.2 V8 LWB and 1689kg Super V8 LWB the least heavy of all the luxury behemoths.

Lightweight aluminium construction, limited to just the XJ and pioneering A8, is a big factor here, clearly showing off the Jaguar’s clever construction advantages.

Spring and damper settings, and suspension mounts and bushings, have been subtly revised to accommodate the extra girth and mass.

However every other aspect of the current series XJ released last year, including the CATS Computer Active Technology (air) Suspension, remains the same.

And like its German rivals, the LWB offers customers the choice of fixed or powered bench or twin chairs, with heating availability.

Reflecting its executive express role, folding worktables, a multi-media interface offering MP3 and DVD connectivity, rear display screens, phone conferencing and voice-controllable all-seating climate control option boxes can be ticked.

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