2013 XF New Car Test Drive
The Jaguar XF is a solid, stylish sports sedan about the size of a BMW 5 Series. The Jaguar has elegant, flowing lines, more interesting than those of the BMW, and the XF has presence, that intangible quality that allows it to stand out in any line of similar luxury sport entries. Underway, the Jaguar XF is smooth, quiet, and comfortable. With a range of powerful engines, the XF delivers strong performance along with responsive handling. As with most sports sedans, the Jaguar XF uses rear-wheel drive for sporty handling and serious performance.
New for the 2013 Jaguar XF, however, is the option of all-wheel drive. All-wheel drive makes the 2013 Jaguar XF 3.0 AWD a compelling choice for driving over snow and ice.
The 2013 Jaguar XF lineup also features new engines and a new 8-speed automatic transmission that improve fuel efficiency.
Four engines are available for the 2013 Jaguar XF, all blown: an impressive new turbocharged 240-hp 2.0-liter inline-4; a superbly powerful and efficient new supercharged 340-hp 3.0-liter V6; a supercharged 470-hp 5.0-liter V8; and a supercharged 510-hp V8. All are outstanding in their own way and all come with new ZF 8-speed automatics.
Jaguar's new Instinctive All-Wheel Drive system brings needed winter capability to the lineup in the form of the 2013 Jaguar XF 3.0 AWD. According to Jaguar North America, 82 percent of luxury cars in the northern two-thirds of the U.S. are currently sold with four-wheel drive. Canada also needs AWD. Jaguar's Instinctive All-Wheel Drive is a fully automatic on-demand system that engages instantaneously when needed and provides a slight rearward bias carefully tailored to suit Jaguar's traditional chassis and handling tastes. All other XF models use traditional rear-wheel drive.
The new supercharged V6 that comes with the 2013 Jaguar XF 3.0 AWD as well as the rear-wheel-drive Jaguar XF 3.0 delivers 340 horsepower. That's 45 horsepower less than the normally aspirated 385-hp 5-liter V8 it replaces, but its performance is far from disappointing, and the new V6 improves fuel economy to an EPA-estimated 28 mpg Highway. On V6 and V8 models, automatic engine start/stop is standard, enhancing fuel savings around town.
The new 240-horsepower 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that comes on the 2013 Jaguar XF 2.0 returns an EPA-estimated 30 mpg Highway, and lowers base MSRP for the 2013 Jaguar XF to $46,975. The turbocharged four has a wonderful, throaty engine note, and its 240 horsepower propel the XF with real enthusiasm. Two liters or not, it's a true Jaguar.
We found the new ZF 8-speed automatic sequential transmission, present in all 2013 Jaguars, to be excellent. Manipulated with paddle shifters, the 8-speed delivers lightning-quick shifts and, within reason, gives you the shifts you command when you command them. It's yet another example of Jaguar's respect for the driver's judgment.
For 2013, Jaguar continues to offer two wickedly speedy 5.0-liter V8 XFs: the Jaguar XF Supercharged with 470 horsepower and the Jaguar XFR with 510 horsepower.
One of Jaguar's most winsome traits is its resistance to technology for technology's sake, as found at BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and Audi. Jaguar's strategy, instead, is to reduce complexity to benign usefulness. Instead of being needlessly confusing, driving one to the Owner's Manual, the primary precepts of the XF's controls are convenience and usability. One exception is the JaguarDrive Selector pop-up knob for selecting gears, but it's more straightforward than BMW's electronic gear selector.
The Jaguar XF interior is dignified but a good bit plainer than the deluxe XJ. Upon entering and pushing the Start button, the HVAC dash vents scroll open and the JaguarDrive knob pops up to greet you. The leather seating is all you could ask of a luxury sport sedan, and the driving experience ahead in this very adult English sedan is a thing to be looked forward to.
The 2013 Jaguar XF sedan is available in five models, with a choice of four engines. All come with 8-speed automatic transmissions.
Jaguar XF 2.0 ($46,975) is powered by a turbocharged 2.0-liter I4 with 240 horsepower, and comes standard with dual-zone climate control, bond-grain leather, six-way heated front seats with two-position memory, rosewood veneer, 250-watt 10-speaker audio, seven-inch full-color touch-screen, rear parking aid with touch-screen visual indicators, one-touch power moonroof, automatic headlights 18-inch ten-spoke alloy wheels.
Jaguar XF 3.0 ($50,000) upgrades to the 3.0-liter V6 with 340 horsepower, 18-inch five twin-spoke alloy wheels, automatic stop/start.
Jaguar XF 3.0 AWD ($53,000) adds all-wheel drive, 19-inch 10-spoke alloy wheels.
Jaguar XF Supercharged ($68,100) features the 5.0-liter supercharged V8 with 470 horsepower, 20-inch V-spoke alloy wheels, hood louvers, quad exhaust tips, auto-dimming exterior mirrors, keyless entry. The V8 models come standard with the Cold Climate Package.
Jaguar XFR ($83,200) features the 5.0-liter supercharged V8 with 510 horsepower, 20-inch seven twin-spoke alloy wheels, R exterior trim, 18-way/14-way front power seats side bolster adjustment and R-embossed trim.
Options for XF 2.0, XF 3.0, AWD: Cold Climate Package for ($700) with heated steering wheel and heated windshield. Convenience Package ($2,500) includes blind-spot monitor, voice command, keyless entry, electrochromic exterior mirrors, automatic high beam, electric rear sunblind. Premium Package ($4,250) includes hard-drive GPS navigation with traffic message channel, 380-Watt Meridian 12-speaker audio, rear camera, front parking air with touch-screen visual indicator, and adaptive front lighting that rotates the headlights during turning. Portfolio Package ($4,000) includes 16-way and 12-way front seat adjustability, heated/cooled front seats, seatback seat pockets, heated steering wheel, suedecloth headliner, premium carpets; 19-inch Portfolio Sport Package for XF and XF 3.0 ($8,575) and for XF 3.0 AWD ($7,000) includes all the content of the Portfolio Package plus 19-inch Aquila alloy wheels, 18-way/14-way front sport seats with soft-grain perforated leather, black veneer and an aero pack; 20-inch Portfolio Sport Package for XF and XF 3.0 ($10,150) and for XF 3.0 AWD ($8,575) includes all of 19-inch Portfolio Sport Package content but adds 20-inch Hydra alloy wheels.
Interior Package for XF Supercharged ($1,300) includes 128-way driver's seat and 14-way passenger's sport seats, with power-adjustable bolsters, bright-finish accelerator and brake pedal cladding.
Black Package for XFR ($1,600) includes dark-gray 20-inch Draco alloy wheels with summer high-performance tires, red brake calipers, body-color trunk finisher, gloss-black window surrounds, front bumper inserts and grille surround. XFR Speed Package ($3,900) removes the top-speed limiter, adds front bumper aero splitter, rear spoiler with integrated brake light, modifies engine and transmission calibrations, modifies the speedometer to display a top speed of 174 mph.
Safety features on all Jaguar XF models includes six airbags: front impact, front-passenger side impact and head-protection curtains for outboard seats. Rear park sensing is standard, as are a tire-pressure monitor and a full range of active safety features: including electronic stability control (ESC) with an understeer management and advanced antilock brakes (ABS) with Cornering Brake Control, which proportions brake force from side to side to keep the car balanced while braking through a curve. Optional safety features include a rearview camera, blind spot warning, automatic headlight dimming, front park sensing system, and all-wheel drive.