By: Veeno Dewan.
There is simply nothing as wonderful in luxury sedan interiors as an upmarket Jaguar. The Germans may have the edge in neat efficiency; the Japanese in sleekness, but when it comes to sumptuous old-world charm and detailing; you have to hand it to the prestigious British car maker – now owned by the Indian TATA Conglomerate. No one, I mean no one does interiors as well as Jaguar. And the rest of the big XJL sedan is not bad either. A credible match to the Mercedes E class, Audi A8 and BMW 7-series, the XJL is a big, long sleek car. Note: the “L” denotes the extended-wheelbase version as tested from the XJ model lineup. The cabin is stretched by 125 millimetres, allowing for superb limo–like rear leg room and cabin has more passenger room than you could ever need. Power is courtesy of either a: 3.0L supercharged V6 with AWD, a normally aspirated 5 Litre V8 or a supercharged V8 engine as found on the XJR. Transmission is via an eight -speed automatic gearbox.
The Jaguar XJL is as mentioned has an equipment list that includes every feature you could think of – and then some. Options include: Semi-aniline trim package with illumination package including semi-aniline leather seats, leather headliner, lighted door sills and trunk plinth, illuminated air vents ($3,475); visibility package including adaptive front lighting, intelligent high beam ($850)
Once more to the interior. A wonderful curved strip of dark wood warps around the dash and into the door tops and gives the cabin the interior feel of a luxury yacht or British gentlemen’s club. Chrome detailing, sumptuous seats and padded soft touch materials ensconce and pamper all occupants. Meanwhile lovely swathes of leather cover most of the surfaces and your feet sink into deep, thick carpets. The big glass sectioned panoramic roof, allows for an airy and light filled cabin. There are precious few complaints about the cabin; the Meridian sound system is phenomenal, the comfort incredible and the whole cabin feels warmer, more pleasant and welcoming than any other luxury car on the planet in my opinion.
On the road, our test cars 3.0 supercharged V6 with AWD package was an efficient, smart package. Yes, the 5 liter V8 might give you bragging rights, however the V6 can accelerate the big XJ from 0 -100 kph in around 6.4 seconds. And with 340 horsepower and 332 pound-feet of torque, it’s a match for previous V8’s with its supercharged induction. Adding to the performance chops is the XJ’s eight-speed ZF automatic; that offers super quick shifts and apportions plenty of low-end and mid-range torque where needed. Traction is also excellent thanks to the Jaguar’s All-Wheel-Drive system that is rear biased, but can send 100% power to the front wheels as needed. The superb flexibility of the AWD system can be felt in slippery situations as the XJ smoothly and sportily adjust to different traction situations. Handling is good with a delightfully tactile feel and although the XJL is longer and has a slightly bigger turning circle it is a smooth, easy to drive car.
With its gleaming white paint work, prominent chrome grill and sleek body, our Jaguar XJL looked impressive, stately and had enough presence to draw admiring glances everywhere. There is not a lot to complain about. The Jaguar is not showy and brash and won’t be your thing if that’s what you crave. It is more of a thoroughbred, refined and with impeccable taste and manners. Should be on the driveway of every mansion!
2015 Jaguar XJL priced from $85,625 to $113,440