Jaguar, the name continues to conjure up memories of style and refinement, with classic lines, engines bred from a racing pedigree. Under current owners Tata the brand has gone from strength to strength, full of drive, imagination, style, and most of all refinement.
The top-of-the-line XE R a second-generation mid-size saloon the XE-R-Sport is a twin turbocharged 2.0-litre diesel 8 speed automatic that delivers with style and comfort.
The XE certainly attracts a great deal of attention, with it’s unmistakeable lines complimented with unique body styling including a redesigned front grill sports bumpers, R-Sport badging and side power vents all giving the XE a real sporty look.
The R-Dynamic styling pack, which also includes lower, stiffer suspension and adaptive shock absorbers make the XE a really comfortable car.
The XE-R’s sports suspension stiffer coil springs and progressive sportier dampers, these springs and dampers being tuned to provide outstanding handling and agility while maintaining Jaguar’s legendary ride quality, controlled but supple enough to take the sting out of potholes in town and is superb on the motorway.
Inside the Jaguar combined sportiness with luxury, body hugging leather sports seats that keep you comfortable and secure on long journeys or when negotiating any tight bends. R-Sport badging on the steering wheel all in keeping with the vehicles sporting prowess.
The head-up display beams key information such as speed and sat-nav direction onto the windscreen directly in front of you, fitted on our car but anis an optional extra is worth considering. The dashboard is easy to get the hang of all well labelled buttons that are easy to reach.
Talking over the best way to put all this to the test is out on the open road. First up we took the XE R on the scenic but testing roads around Oldham along Snake Pass via Glossop to see how it coped with some of the worst conditions that part of the Manchester and its notoriously fickle weather and roads could throw at it.
The XE took it all in its stride, sure footed around the twists and turns of these country lanes it could have been on rails. Extremely responsive handling meant it took the often, sudden steep inclines and drops in the road due to the terrain, again all in its stride. Being on country roads which at times contained their share of pot holes I can say the suspension smoothed out the bumps effortlessly giving a comfortable ride.
After putting our XE through its paces on country roads it was time to put where it should be fully at home, on the motorway.
On the M62 the steering felt nicely weighted and the front end is so accurate and responsive that you know exactly where you are at all times. It’s smooth, enjoyable and exhibits deftness and positivity in all it does. Jaguar seem to have nailed the relationship between the supple suspension the tyres and the road giving a cohesive surefooted handling experience.
We took the car on a long journey from Manchester to Leeds ten onto Hull before heading back the most noticeable feature was at no point did I feel tired or fatigued from the long spells of driving. I might add the XE R monitors that warn the driver if they seem to be dozing were not called into play.
After the motorway jaunt, we put the XE through the ‘boring’, it’s all well and good to do all the exciting bits with the car but how does it manage in the less glamorous day to day roles.
It was taking the kids to school, well when we turned up at the school the car certainly held its own, turning heads, standing out amongst the various 4X4’s, a refreshing digression from the XC60’s.
The easy handling at low speeds meant I could easily slip the XE in the tightest of spots with ease and dispatch the kids safely at the school gates without mishap.
Susan took the Jag supermarket to get the shopping, again the car turned heads as we parked up getting many admiring looks. My only concern was that no one would get to close and catch the car when they opened their doors, but hey that’s the reality of life.
On returning no minor dents, the only point I would make, though the boot is ample I did need to use the back seats the get all the shopping in – but that was a minor compromise to make, and after all its first priority is not to be a shopping trolley. So our Jaguar does the mundane with as much aplomb as it does on the motorway or around the city.
Jaguar XE saloon safety and security - All XEs come with automatic emergency braking, lane-departure warning and driver drowsiness monitoring, while range-topping HSE cars have blindspot monitoring and an adaptive cruise control system that automatically keeps you a safe distance from the car in front.
The XE comes with a Euro NACAP five-star crash test rating and a point worth noting the XE outscored the Audi A4 in all but child occupant protection.
Every XE comes with an alarm and an engine immobiliser to help keep your XE out of the hands of thieves, and you can add a vehicle tracker.
The Jaguar delivers on the hype, with handling second to none, positive and sure, inside you are immerse in luxury environment making for a stress free journey whether it’s around the corner to the shops or across the country on a long journey you will arrive feeling fresh and relaxed.
Jaguar certainly continue to produce winners and the latest XE R will certainly have their competitors taking notice and trying to equal.
The car was a Jaguar XE R-Sport 4 cylinder twin turbo charged diesel.
Check out this and other Jaguar models and special deals at www.jaguar.co.uk
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