click image above for high-res gallery Put a gun to my head, hand over a winning lottery ticket and tell me to go out and bring back the best grand touring sports car money can buy, and I may just return with a Jaguar XK. Ask for the best large or midsize luxury saloon, however, and you will not get a car crowned by a leaping jungle cat. Read Dan Roth's review of the 2007 Jaguar XK Convertible, and you'll wonder just how the current XJ, S-Type and X-Type can be sold under the same brand as the XK Coupe and Convertible. So what happens when you add an "R" to the XK? For one, the price jumps by $11,000 to $92,500. Aside from that, the high-performance version of Jaguar's sexy drop top kicks things up a notch from mild to medium strength. As good as the XK is, does the additional consonant make that big of a difference? %Gallery-6562% click any image to enlarge Much of your extra $11,000 is spent under the hood of the XKR, but we'll get to that in a minute. Considering that the standard XK coupe and convertible are regarded as objects of automotive sex, we're curious as to why Jaguar felt it necessary to accessorize their highly regarded design with go-fast trinkets. The XKR gets a new front bumper and mesh grille design that, frankly, doesn't improve the standard car's gentle lines. Add to that a pair of aluminum hood vents emblazoned with the word "SUPERCHARGED" that spoils the surprise below. The most telling sign you've got an XKR on your hands is the air extractor vents behind the front wheels, which here are blinged a bit instead of body colored like on the standard cars. Of course, XKRs also wear new wheels, in our case a set of 19-inchers with five split-spokes per. Finally, all XKR models sport a pair of dual exhausts out back, another indicator your XK is into heavy breathing. We're such fans of the standard XK's design that ordering up an XKR without the new front end would be a preferable option. We'd keep the new wheels, chromed side vents and extra set of exhaust tips, as we do believe in differentiating your power player from the rest of the lineup. That said, we could deliver countless bystanders and passerbys who disagree with us. You may remember that the XKR Convertible was with us at the 2007 Woodward Dream Cruise, and surprisingly (at least to us) the convertible from Coventry drew in more than its fair share of gawkers while parked on Motor City's most famous avenue. Despite our reservations, Jaguar must have done something right with striking a balance in the XKR's design of elegant grace and aggressive tendencies. The interior of the XKR, meanwhile, has been tampered with little by Jaguar. Added are only aluminum "weave" inserts, which our tester didn't even have in favor of burled walnut inserts (a no-cost option), and sport seats with …
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|MPG||17 City / 25 Hwy|
|Transmission||6-spd auto w/OD|
|Power||420 @ 6000 rpm|
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