By Nauman Farooq
The current generation of the Jaguar XJ-series, has been around since 2010, so it is getting on a bit. Jaguar knows that, and is working on its replacement, which should arrive in about two years time! Before that happens, Jaguar has been mildly updating the current XJ over the years, so now it has improved infotainment features – but the most exciting update in under the hood!
From the very beginning of the model cycle for the current generation XJ, Jaguar has been offering supercharged versions of their luxury sedan, but now they’ve turned the dial all the way up to 11! Under the hood of the XJR575 is a supercharged 5.0L V8 engine that produces 575 hp and 517 lb-ft of torque. That is the same power output you’ll find in the Jaguar F-Type SVR, but unlike the little all-wheel drive sports car, in the XJR575 all the power goes to just the rear wheels – that should make things entertaining! Between the engine and the drive wheels, is an eight-speed automatic by ZF, which is just about the fastest shifting automatic in the business. While a dual-clutch gearbox might be a fraction faster, the ZF automatic is smoother to use on a daily basis, and is still satisfyingly quick enough for when you want to take control yourself!
Speaking of quick, this full-size luxury sedan is very quick; Zero to 100 km/h is covered in 4.4 seconds, while top speed is electronically limited at 300 km/h – that’s three times the speed limit in Ontario! Hopefully no one will be trying its top speed on our local roads, but its blistering acceleration surely comes in handy, for when you need to pass someone in a hurry.
So the speed surely surprises, especially for those who are not aware of what this car can do. What impresses just as much is its stability and handling! Despite its size (length = 5,255 mm) and girth (curb weight = 1,885 kg), this long wheelbase version -hence the “L” in its full name, XJ L 575R- goes around corners with minimal body roll, and on the highway, its high speed stability is faultless.
It’s pace is a bonus on top of all the other qualities it has as a full-size luxury sedan, such as interior space, comfort and technology. However, as far as technology goes it is well behind its current German rivals, but I fully expect Jaguar to catch up and surpass its rivals when the new XJ is revealed in the future!
As you’d expect, a luxury car with this much performance wouldn’t come cheap, and it doesn’t, the XJ L 575R has a base price of $126,500 + all the usual freight, PDI, dealer fees and taxes.
That means, it is more expensive than the new BMW M5, but this Jaguar is a larger vehicle, so it offers more lounging space. Also, as you’d expect, this supercharged super sedan also loves to drink premium fuel, but with my weekly average of 11.7 L/100 km, it was not only better than the consumption numbers provided by Jaguar, but better than all its rivals!
If you’re looking for a fast, super sedan, the XJ L 575R might not be your first choice, but trust me, you need to sample this beast to fully appreciate it – it sure has the charms to win just about anyone over.