It’s rare that you get an invite to come along and listen to a new car’s audio system, but when Jaguar suggested I do just that with the new XF I couldn’t resist.
Jaguar is, understandably, making a big deal out of the XF’s sound system.
It’s created by Bowers and Wilkins – a British audio company that provides Abbey Road studios with all its speakers, and which represents the holy grail for audiophiles.
The 440W system fitted to the XF boasts fourteen speakers, Dolby surround sound and a system tuned to offer faithful sound reproduction.
All kinds of technical trickery is used to achieve this, including speaker cones made out of Kevlar – the same stuff you make a bullet-proof jacket out of. So no distortion there, then.
I tried just about every variety of music at every level, and I reckon it's the best in-car audio system out there (that's including the phenomenal Lexus LS).
The only bum note was that we weren't allowed to run the car's engine (let alone drive it), so I couldn't tell you how affected the sound quality might be by road noise, etc. That will be the true test.
It is an awesome sound system, though. It's trump card that it gives the same level of sound quality, whatever the music and wherever you are seated in the car.
You won’t be surprised to know that this isn’t standard.
Buy the base Luxury XF and an upgrade to the Bowers and Wilkins model will cost you £1540 from the standard 140 watt, 8-speaker affair.
The next trim level, Luxury Premium, comes as standard with a 320 watt unit, meaning you can upgrade to the Bowers and Wilkins for a mere £1140.
Go for the range-topping supercharged V8 model, and you’ll get the Bowers and Wilkins system as standard.
Then again, buy the SV8 and you’d probably rather listen to the engine.