Like the rest of the XF range, there are slimmer, XJ-style headlamps, reshaped bonnet and bumper
Jaguar has sensibly resisted the temptation to alter the dynamic set-up
As impressive as it ever was – effortlessly rapid, with a spectacularly broad range of abilities
Headlights are similar in style to the ones found on the Jaguar XJ
One of the few cars to have been awarded a five-star rating in an Autocar road test
Jaguar has addressed several aspects of the XF’s interior that we weren’t so sure about
Rubber-esque soft-touch plastic replaces the faux aluminium switchgear
First DriveNew high-performance estate delivers an appealing combination of big power and load-lugging ability
First DriveThe new 542bhp, 186mph Jaguar estate is an interesting proposition, but it's one that requires an attentive driver
What is it?
In a sense the XFR has it all to lose – this is, after all, one of the few cars to have been awarded a five-star rating in an Autocar road test.
Wise to this, Jaguar has sensibly resisted the temptation to alter the dynamic set-up. Mechanically, this is the same car we tested in 2009. What has changed is its appearance. Like the rest of the XF range, there are new, slimmer, XJ-style headlamps along with a reshaped bonnet and bumper. Together, this gives the XF a more assertive face.
What's it like
However, the biggest news is in the cabin, because Jaguar has addressed several aspects of the XF’s interior that we weren’t so sure about.
Rubber-esque soft-touch plastic replaces the faux aluminium switchgear. That might sound like a retrograde step but, personally, I think it is superior in appearance, to the touch and in the actual movement of the buttons. These are small things, but thin-feeling switchgear can so easily destroy the sense of premium.
Jaguar has also upgraded the combined navigation, ventilation and entertainment touchscreen – with simplified control logic, enhanced resolution and new icons.
Although it is still not quite class leading, it is at least now not embarrassed by a Skoda Superb. Interestingly, though, this system surpasses that fitted to the XJ, meaning that Jag’s cheapest car now has its best sat-nav.
Elsewhere, the XFR is as impressive as it ever was – effortlessly rapid, with a spectacularly broad range of abilities.
Should I buy one?
Far from losing anything, the enhancements keep the XFR at the top of the class, especially given that, at £65,350, it undercuts rivals from Mercedes and Porsche. The risk on the horizon is the new BMW M5 but, as the XKR-S illustrates, Jaguar probably has something in reserve.
Price: £65,350; Top speed: 155mph (limited); 0-62mph: 4.9sec; Economy: 22.5mpg; CO2: 292g/km; Kerb weight: 1891kg; Engine: V8, 5000cc, supercharged; Power: 503bhp at 6500rpm; Torque: 461lb ft at 5500rpm; Gearbox: 6-spd automatic