“Jaguar has succeeded in creating a bold, rakish, modern super-saloon that succeeds on every level.”
So the judges concluded in the 2011 AM Awards when selecting Jaguar’s four-door flagship as winner of the Car of the Year.
The new XJ is the most radical step in redesign of the car since the 1960s and together with a totally new look is bursting with luxury and technology to suit the whims of the most discerning executive.
An instrument panel dominated by digital dials, a ‘dual-view’ eight-inch touchscreen can show DVDs or television (£500 optional extra) to passengers while the driver uses the sat nav; sound is provided by a 1,200 watt Bowers & Wilkins system, plus hard-disc drive for music storage, DAB radio (£250 optional extra), two USB ports, Bluetooth and inputs for iPods and laptops are among the wizardry.
The tactic is paying off: the new XJ went on sale in May 2010.
Last year’s registrations totalled 318; this year it is 1,044, a 228% increase: May 2010 142 units; May 2011 200 – a 40% increase.
There are four engines in the range: three 5.0-litre V8s and a 3.0-litre V6 diesel.
In the UK the 3.0-litre derivative is the most popular engine choice. It makes up 82.7% of sales with the 5.0-litre naturally aspirated 7.6% and the 5.0-litre supercharged model 9.7%.
The advantages of the diesel are obvious.
The 0-62mph figure is achieved in a highly refined and unflustered 6.4 seconds.
Just because you can afford the hefty price tag – or your company is willing to put out for one – doesn’t mean you don’t want to spend the money keeping it on the road wisely.
So, the official combined mpg figure of 39.2 is compelling – on our week’s road test we were achieving 36.
Aiding this is aluminium body construction, which makes the XJ around 150kg lighter than its rivals.
It also uses around 50% recycled material creating a saving of three tonnes of CO2 per vehicle compared to a new aluminium bodyshell.