2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S front 3/4 view

2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S rear 3/4 view

2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S wheel

2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S engine

2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S interior

2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S front seats

2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S climate control display

2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S center console

2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S rear seats

2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S
  • 2012 Jaguar XKR-S trunk

  •   Engine
    SC 5.0L V8
  •   Power
    550 HP / 502 LB-FT
  •   Transmission
    6-Speed Auto
  •   0-60 Time
    4.2 Seconds
  •   Top Speed
    186 MPH
  •   Drivetrain
    Rear-Wheel Drive
  •   Curb Weight
    4,079 LBS
  •   Seating
    2+2
  •   Cargo
    11.1 CU-FT (max)
  •   MPG
    15 City / 22 HWY
Editor's Note: This is our new Quick Spin format, now shorter, less formal and more personal than our regular reviews. We've reinvented the format so we can talk about even more of the new vehicles we drive. Enjoy!



Not long after executive editor Chris Paukert drove the Jaguar XKR-S Coupe, I found myself holding the keys to the gorgeous British Racing Green XKR-S Convertible you see here. Mechanically, it's exactly the same as the coupe, save an additional 111 pounds of weight and a slightly less-usable boot. And from behind the wheel, the Convertible's on-road manners don't differ too much from its hardtop kin.

Thanks to a revised chassis setup versus the standard XK convertible, the XKR-S isn't plagued with cowl shake or general wobbliness, though there's a still a bit of safe, predictable understeer dialed in to the suspension geometry. Around back, the big cat will happily swing its butt out around a turn when provoked, even with the traction control nannies in full effect. The XKR-S Convertible takes to the road more like a muscle car than a proper sportster, ditching scalpel-like precise handling for pure stabbing force.

The most impressive part of the XKR-S formula is the menacing growl that shoots out of what we can only assume are the polished quad exhaust tips of Satan's own vocal cords.

But the XKR-S Convertible's pièce de résistance is best seen – or rather, heard – when you drop the top. Nevermind the brute force of the 550-horsepower supercharged V8 underhood, able to slap the 4,079-pound Jaguar to 60 miles per hour in just 4.2 seconds, the most impressive part of the XKR-S formula is the menacing growl that shoots out of what we can only assume are the polished quad exhaust tips of Satan's own vocal cords. During my week with the car, I couldn't resist purposely mashing the throttle as I drove out onto Woodward Avenue in downtown Detroit, simply so I could hear that heart-fluttering roar bounce off the tall concrete buildings, slamming pedestrians with eight-cylinder aural delight whether they liked it or not.

Thing is, though, you get this same sort of experience in the coupe. And while the hardtop XKR-S doesn't come with the wind-in-your-hair experience, it does everything the droptop can do for a full $6,000 less. The same well-appointed, beautifully trimmed interior is there, complete with two excellent sport chairs up front, completely useless rear buckets that are better suited for packages than people, and the same infuriatingly slow infotainment/navigation system we've grown to, well, deal with. In any case, the XKR-S package is very sweet, but unless you're hellbent on the full open-air experience, just stick with the coupe.

Autoblog accepts vehicle loans from auto manufacturers with a tank of gas and sometimes insurance for the purpose of evaluation and editorial content. Like most of the auto news industry, we also sometimes accept travel, lodging and event access for vehicle drive and news coverage opportunities. Our opinions and criticism remain our own — we do not accept sponsored editorial.


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