Priced from £48,640, Jaguar’s 296bhp XF Sportbrake R-Sport sits towards the expensive end of the executive estate car spectrum. That said, there are few four-cylinder rivals that offer comparable levels of performance for the money.

The £48,315 BMW 530i M Sport Touring undercuts the Jaguar on price by a few hundred pounds, but develops 47bhp less and is exclusively rear-driven. Audi’s 242bhp A6 Avant 45 TFSI Quattro S Line, meanwhile, comes in at £47,355.

The XF’s 2.0 engine lends it respectable pace, but I find its poor economy hard to overlook. Short city hops can make the readout dip as low as 20mpg at times.

The Jaguar’s roster of standard equipment is lengthy. A 10in touchscreen infotainment system, powered tailgate, sports suspension, 18in alloys, R-Sport body kit and leather upholstery are all included; and yet, even at this level, it’s unlikely that XF customers will escape the showroom without splashing another 10% of the sticker price on options. With extras such as 20in alloys (£2095), a fixed panoramic roof (£1125), a head-up display (£1270) and more besides, the total cost of our test vehicle came in at a breath-checking £62,020.

Less impressive was the XF’s economy: we saw a 24.1mpg average, while a sustained 70mph cruise returned 36.8mpg. These figures aren’t too far off what you might have expected from the old XF V6 S, despite being two cylinders down.

What Car? New car buyer marketplace - Jaguar XF Sportbrake


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