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Jaguar XJ L
Driven August 2011
There’s something about a Jaguar that grabs your attention right away. Yes, the sleek lines and the cat-eye styled headlamps on either side of a prominent grille with a leaping cat stuck in the centre help. But, there’s also the fact that it just has a breath of fresh air about it and it doesn’t seem to take it all that seriously.
Yep, it definitely scores over the German brigade in this one department and the fact that it isn’t the most widely available car also makes this Jag exclusive. The XJ isn’t quite as sporty as the XF or the XK, but then let’s face it, expecting that sort of agility from a limo is rather unreal. However, put it up against a 7 series or an S class and the Jag’s character stacks up. Even with a 3-litre V6, diesel, that this particular car is fitted with, the XJ feels impressive.
Step inside the cabin and the Jag just feels special. It isn’t as flashy as the A8, but it delivers with a touch of class with its leather covered dash and wood inserts. The cool blue ambient lighting adds to the entire occasion of being inside the XJ. We must concede the fact that it doesn’t ride quite as well as some of the Germans, but it isn’t particularly upsetting either.
The ride is easier to discount for once you engage ‘sport’ mode and the whole car firms up around you with the ambient cabin light switching to a more aggressive red and the graphic dials on the instrument display take on the same colour. It manages itself extremely well for a car its size and it’s not long before you have a broad smile on your face. In fact it gets into proper leaping cat mode and makes you think there might be horns coming out by the side of the headlamps.
The Jaguar XJ may not be the best house-on-wheels experience, but it sure is a superb luxury car which offers you more for the cash you pay while making you look real cool when you hang out with your high flying associates.