Special edition version of Jaguar’s rival to the BMW 3 Series also gets unique design features

Jaguar has introduced a new, 296bhp all-wheel-drive model, the 300 Sport, to its updated XE range.

The special-edition model is powered by the most potent version of Jaguar’s four-cylinder petrol engine, the 2.0-litre Ingenium, producing 295lb ft of torque.

With drive sent to all four wheels, this enables a 0-60mph time of 5.4sec, making the car just 0.5sec slower to the mark than the V6-powered and rear-wheel-drive XE S.

The 300 Sport has bespoke design feature including dark satin trim for the door mirrors, spoiler and grille surround. The car sits on model-exclusive 19in or 20in wheels painted in the same colour.

Four body colours are offered: Yulong White, Indus Silver, Santorini Black and Caldera Red.

Inside, the XE 300 Sport has contrasting yellow stitching on the steering wheel, seats and door internals. There are also 300 Sport-branded kickplates, while the car’s floor mats and headrests are embossed with the name.

As standard, the 300 Sport gets Jaguar’s Touch Pro infotainment system with a 10.0in touchscreen.

Like the rest of petrol XE range, it features a new particulate filter that can capture ultra-fine particles and oxidise them into CO2.

The 300 Sport is available to order now, priced from £45,160, making it £3960 more expensive than the next highest-ranking XE with the 296bhp engine, the R-Sport AWD.

Jaguar has also introduced the 300 Sport trim to its XF and XF Sportbrake models. Those cars can also be specified with the brand’s 296bhp 3.0-litre TDV6 diesel engine, but they’re not available in Caldera Red.

To mark the launch of the new cars, Jaguar pitted an XE 300 Sport against Hungarian Winter Olympic gold medallist Shaolin Sándor Liu in an ice race. Driven by Jaguar’s car stability development boss, Sean Haughey, the car beat speed skater Liu on the ice by more than a minute.

Jaguar's chief engineer, Mike Cross, said: “Ice is one of the most demanding surfaces for any vehicle to contend with, and this race demonstrated the XE’s all-surface capability and unrivalled handling in adverse conditions.”

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Our Verdict

Jaguar XE

Jaguar's first attempt at a compact exec saloon is good - very good. But can the XE hold off the BMW 3 Series and Alfa Romeo Guilia to retain its crown?

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Comments
33

19 April 2018

and £7015 more than the R-Sport AWD, seems alot of dosh. Maybe I'm just not moving with times

typos1 - Just can’t respect opinion

19 April 2018

No, you're absolutely correct - this car is overpriced. I know it's a limited edition, at this price it will be very limited, which will be the only reason why its depreciation will not be too steep.

19 April 2018

Error in article..checked Jaguar website and the price gap to the R Sport is £3,960. 

19 April 2018

...and the updates will be ready in good time to welcome in a new 3 Series.  I wonder if BMW will be  concerned by Jaguars yellow interior stitching?  

19 April 2018
Kamelo wrote:

...and the updates will be ready in good time to welcome in a new 3 Series.  I wonder if BMW will be  concerned by Jaguars yellow interior stitching?  

Youdo know that’s there will be a XE mid life facelift? BMW is no ultimate driver machine no more and while Alfa and Jaguar are here, they will never be ultimate anything. Jus average cars that are mass produced more so then the mass producers with a badge that has lost meaning. 

19 April 2018

Is climate change not environmental issue of the moment anymore then?

Given that the 240bhp motor in a 2wd car is listed at 37.7mpg, with more power, 4wd and particulate oxidisation into CO2...I guess not!

Roll on Lithium contamination.

19 April 2018

Well, I hope with the introduction of this variant of the XE proves to be reliable, has a higher quality interior and just generally features odd changes here and there to represent its premium placing and pricing. My XE has just come back from it's 5th visit to the dealer in 2 years to have another issue resolved....while the courtesy car I had, a 2.0d XE, had one of the most God-awful diesel drivetrains I've ever experiened, especially in this day and age. Compared to the older but equivalent 2.0d engine I sampled in an Audi A6 this week, it was simply light years behind and felt no more refined or responsive than when I first sampled this Ingenium engine well over a year ago! And while the naff interior quality is commonplace on all XEs, the leather seats on mine are already looking like they've seen better days even though it's only 2 years old and done only 11,000 miles. But then, when the XE looks great (IMO) and drives well, that's all that matters....isn't it Autocar?

19 April 2018
Lanehogger wrote:

Well, I hope with the introduction of this variant of the XE proves to be reliable, has a higher quality interior and just generally features odd changes here and there to represent its premium placing and pricing. My XE has just come back from it's 5th visit to the dealer in 2 years to have another issue resolved....while the courtesy car I had, a 2.0d XE, had one of the most God-awful diesel drivetrains I've ever experiened, especially in this day and age. Compared to the older but equivalent 2.0d engine I sampled in an Audi A6 this week, it was simply light years behind and felt no more refined or responsive than when I first sampled this Ingenium engine well over a year ago! And while the naff interior quality is commonplace on all XEs, the leather seats on mine are already looking like they've seen better days even though it's only 2 years old and done only 11,000 miles. But then, when the XE looks great (IMO) and drives well, that's all that matters....isn't it Autocar?

My experience has been completely different. My XE is two and a half years old, has done 49,000 miles and has only been to the dealer for one fault other than normal service work. The stop-start wasn't stopping, which wasn't a major problem. They still fixed it. The diesel engine is fine, as is the interior. I was just wiping it over today and it looks like new apart from the natural creasing of the leather on the driver's seat after 49,000 miles. And it does driver well. When I test drove an Audi, the steering was just dead. It's unmistakably a front wheel drive car AND THE INTERIOR RATTLED. The XE's chassis is good enough for a £50k car on the base passive dampers. If you put take the 2.0 petrol base model, you can get into 140 mph XE with its fantastic chassis for £25k if you shop around. Bargain.

Happy motoring

19 April 2018
rhwilton wrote:

Lanehogger wrote:

Well, I hope with the introduction of this variant of the XE proves to be reliable, has a higher quality interior and just generally features odd changes here and there to represent its premium placing and pricing. My XE has just come back from it's 5th visit to the dealer in 2 years to have another issue resolved....while the courtesy car I had, a 2.0d XE, had one of the most God-awful diesel drivetrains I've ever experiened, especially in this day and age. Compared to the older but equivalent 2.0d engine I sampled in an Audi A6 this week, it was simply light years behind and felt no more refined or responsive than when I first sampled this Ingenium engine well over a year ago! And while the naff interior quality is commonplace on all XEs, the leather seats on mine are already looking like they've seen better days even though it's only 2 years old and done only 11,000 miles. But then, when the XE looks great (IMO) and drives well, that's all that matters....isn't it Autocar?

My experience has been completely different. My XE is two and a half years old, has done 49,000 miles and has only been to the dealer for one fault other than normal service work. The stop-start wasn't stopping, which wasn't a major problem. They still fixed it. The diesel engine is fine, as is the interior. I was just wiping it over today and it looks like new apart from the natural creasing of the leather on the driver's seat after 49,000 miles. And it does driver well. When I test drove an Audi, the steering was just dead. It's unmistakably a front wheel drive car AND THE INTERIOR RATTLED. The XE's chassis is good enough for a £50k car on the base passive dampers. If you put take the 2.0 petrol base model, you can get into 140 mph XE with its fantastic chassis for £25k if you shop around. Bargain.

I see they have taken advantage of the drop inpopularity of diesel to hike th eprice of the entry level petrol model by £3,000! Not the bargain that it was. Still, I would buy another. I've never had another car which I so look forward to driving.

Happy motoring

19 April 2018
rhwilton wrote:

Lanehogger wrote:

Well, I hope with the introduction of this variant of the XE proves to be reliable, has a higher quality interior and just generally features odd changes here and there to represent its premium placing and pricing. My XE has just come back from it's 5th visit to the dealer in 2 years to have another issue resolved....while the courtesy car I had, a 2.0d XE, had one of the most God-awful diesel drivetrains I've ever experiened, especially in this day and age. Compared to the older but equivalent 2.0d engine I sampled in an Audi A6 this week, it was simply light years behind and felt no more refined or responsive than when I first sampled this Ingenium engine well over a year ago! And while the naff interior quality is commonplace on all XEs, the leather seats on mine are already looking like they've seen better days even though it's only 2 years old and done only 11,000 miles. But then, when the XE looks great (IMO) and drives well, that's all that matters....isn't it Autocar?

My experience has been completely different. My XE is two and a half years old, has done 49,000 miles and has only been to the dealer for one fault other than normal service work. The stop-start wasn't stopping, which wasn't a major problem. They still fixed it. The diesel engine is fine, as is the interior. I was just wiping it over today and it looks like new apart from the natural creasing of the leather on the driver's seat after 49,000 miles. And it does driver well. When I test drove an Audi, the steering was just dead. It's unmistakably a front wheel drive car AND THE INTERIOR RATTLED. The XE's chassis is good enough for a £50k car on the base passive dampers. If you put take the 2.0 petrol base model, you can get into 140 mph XE with its fantastic chassis for £25k if you shop around. Bargain.

Don't get me wrong, the driving dynamics of the XE are superb and the car looks great too IMO. And I agree that dynamically the A6, and indeed almost every Audi, is a dull drive. But as a complete package I'm not convinced the XE is superb and from experience of driving some of the XE's competitors, expecially equivalent spec ones, I find they have much better drivetrains and a higher quality interior. But at the end of the day many cars develop issues and I just seem to be unlucky with mine.

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