Tuesday, June 25, 2019
ADVT 
Reviews

2019 Jaguar-XF

By Benjamin Yong, 14 Mar, 2019
  • 2019 Jaguar-XF

Making four-doors fun again

 

 

Life’s too short to drive a bland sedan. Jaguar’s mid-size XF is a definite cure for the blahs in the segment, and experiences a mild refresh for the 2019 model year. DARPAN recently got behind the wheel and here’s what we thought of the ride. If you’ve ever seen the vehicle, one of the first things that stand out is how long it is. Sporty details such as a power bulge in the hood, short front overhang, low, sloping roof and sharp creases in the bodywork ensures no comparisons to a boat are made.

“In creating the XF, as a design team we were driven by discipline, the discipline of simplicity. Every exterior line on the XF has a clear purpose — nothing is superfluous,” says Jaguar director of design Ian Callum in a news release. “Achieving that simplicity takes time and requires great determination; it’s all too easy to add lines to a car, but much harder to add character by leaving lines out.” I drove the S trim for the purposes of this review, however a 300 SPORT is being introduced for the first time. A number of exclusive styling changes differentiate the fresh model like a Dark Satin Grey treatment applied to the grille surround, side sills, spoiler, rear bumper valance and alloy wheels.

All XFs receive select enhancements to the cabin. These include a suedecloth headliner (surprise, the buttery-soft material is actually vegan and made from recycled plastic bottles), frameless auto-dimming rear-view mirror, chrome adjustment switches, illuminated door sill plates with “Jaguar” script, and more. The front seats are comfortable and supportive enough to prevent any unwanted flopping around during cornering. I’ve driven my fair share of the company’s portfolio, and am still amused each time the rotary gear selector electronically rises up and the air vents rotate open as soon as the ignition is switched on. A 10-inch display is now standard equipment across the range, the hub of the InControl Touch Pro infotainment system that is adequate although a little laggy to respond to inputs. The absence of a physical knob for tuning radio stations is a bit cumbersome as well, but hey, at least there’s one for the volume.

Another addition for 2019 is Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, part of the optional Smartphone Package. Key apps can be opened and manipulated via the centre touchscreen much like on your mobile device, or with voice commands. A benefit of a stretched out 2,960-millimetre wheelbase is lots of legroom for rear passengers, befitting of a true executive car. People in the back are also able to get their own climate control, heated seats and even some window blinds for sunny weather.

The XF handles really well, especially for a big 1,755-kilogram sedan – engineers have employed a few tricks to lighten the load and increase agility. Aluminum and magnesium is used extensively in its construction, and a near 50:50 weight distribution has been achieved. Turn the steering wheel at speed and the vehicle responds quickly and predictably, whether in dry or inclement conditions due to the S’ all-wheel drive system.

Most of the lineup is powered by 2.0-litre turbocharged engines except for the top-of-the-line S grade. Our tester had the 3.0-litre supercharged V6 Producing 380 horsepower and 332 lb-ft of torque, which felt exceptionally fast whenever I really put my foot down. The ZF eight-speed automatic transmission zips through gears seamlessly and without hesitation.

HIGHLIGHTS

MSRP: $75,300

Motor: 3.0-litre turbocharged V6

Horsepower: 380 @ 6,500 rpm

Torque (lb-ft): 332 @ 4,500 rpm

Gearbox: Eight-speed automatic

Layout: Front engine, all-wheel drive

Fuel economy: 13.2 L/100 km mixed city/highway (observed)

MORE Reviews ARTICLES

2018 Land Rover Discovery

2018 Land Rover Discovery

New Discovery redefines the large SUV. Land Rover’s design and engineering teams have revolutionised the Discovery DNA to create a highly desirable, extremely versatile and hugely capable premium SUV.

2018 Land Rover Discovery

2018 NISSAN Qashqai

2018 NISSAN Qashqai

As an urbanite myself, I do appreciate a smaller form factor for navigating narrow parking spots and streets.

2018 NISSAN Qashqai

2018 Maserati Levante S GranSport

2018 Maserati Levante S GranSport

Even as a journalist, it is not often that I get to drive an exotic car like a Maserati, and ones that I have ridden have been a little disappointing in many areas.

2018 Maserati Levante S GranSport

2018 Range Rover VELAR

2018 Range Rover VELAR

“We call the Velar the avant-garde Range Rover. It brings a new dimension of glamour, modernity and elegance to the brand. The Range Rover Velar changes everything,” says Land Rover chief design officer Gerry McGovern. 

2018 Range Rover VELAR

2018 Mercedes-Benz C300 Wagon 4MATIC

2018 Mercedes-Benz C300 Wagon 4MATIC

Bigger and bolder than ever before, the gorgeous vehicle has striking bodylines. If you’ve seen the sedan variant, the story is much the same save for, of course, the tail section. 

2018 Mercedes-Benz C300 Wagon 4MATIC

2018 BMW M240i

2018 BMW M240i
 
The little Coupe feels lively and agile, running on an Adaptive M suspension setup comprised largely of aluminum. Throw in a low centre of gravity, near 
50:50 weight distribution and variable electromechanical sport steering and what you’ve got is a car that truly handles as though it’s on rails. 

2018 BMW M240i