News : Jaguar XFR-S breaks cover in LA

Carole Nash Classic Insurance Specialists

The Jaguar XFR-S has been unveiled at the 2012 Los Angeles motor show, and it’s going M5, RS and AMG hunting. The new British super-saloon receives the same engine as the XKR-S with 542bhp, gets its speed limiter raised to 186mph, and has been priced at £79,995.

The XFR-S’s 5.0-litre supercharged V8 has been boosted by 39bhp, and 40lb ft, and that puts it right in the heart of the German super-saloon market. Like the XKR-S, the XFR-S features improved airflow and a new exhaust system. If it sounds as good as the coupe, deploying all that power will be difficult to resist. Transmission is via an eight-speed automatic – and it incorporates stop/start technology.

The suspension has been revised, and firmer springs with stiffer adaptive dampers have been incorporated. The electronic differential and stability control systems have also been fettled, with a ‘Trac DSC’ mode that’s promised to be even more playful than before.

The biggest changes are reserved for the styling – new 20in alloy wheels and aggressive aerodynamic spoilers, are the most obvious, especially that over-sized carbonfibre rear wing. The on sale date is May 2013, and comes in at a £15,000 premium over the already brilliant XFR. Question is – will it appeal to new buyers, or is it in danger of scaring off the Jaguar faithful due to its extrovert styling?

Keith Adams

Keith Adams

Editor and creator AROnline at AROnline
Created www.austin-rover.co.uk in 2001 and built it up to become the world's foremost reference source for all things BMC, Leyland and Rover Group, before renaming it AROnline in 2007.

Is the Editor of the Parkers website and price guide, formerly editor of Classic Car Weekly, and launch editor/creator of Modern Classics magazine. Has contributed to various motoring titles including Octane, Practical Classics, Evo, Honest John, CAR magazine, Autocar, Pistonheads, Diesel Car, Practical Performance Car, Performance French Car, Car Mechanics, Jaguar World Monthly, MG Enthusiast, Modern MINI, Practical Classics, Fifth Gear Website, Radio 4, and the the Motoring Independent...

Likes 'conditionally challenged' motors and taking them on unfeasible adventures all across Europe.
Keith Adams

56 Comments

  1. Great pictures of a very attractive car – and what power, even though it cant be driven at those speeds in the UK. Surely it will boost the image of the XF even further…

  2. Ugh! How to ruin a great looking car…..looks like a Kevved-up Scoobie. Awful colour too! I hope they also offer a toned-down version for the more mature (over 19) buyer?

  3. @4 Funny you should say that, I immediately thought ‘new Vauxhall VXR8, eh?’ until I read the heading closely.

    What an ghastly ghastly thing. Thank god they’ll be rare over here.

  4. Yep, one could think it’s an Aussie Q-car…Good if it earns its bread though, and a daring move. That said, why should a wealthy family man chose between the kids and XKR-S? If it steals sales from the German barges, I can only applaud. It might also reduce average age of Jag’ customers by a decade or two, maybe Kev will have to wait his 29th birthday (in 10 years time, they’ll be Dacia money!!)and get hooked to a brand he would not have considered otherwise. Kev will be old, hopefully affluent and enjoy well crafted, comfy but powerful cars when he gets older…Roll in the more sedate versions… I’d have one, in black, one day.

  5. @8 If, in 10 yrs time, XFs are going to be as cheap as you say, Kev can go out and buy an XF 2.2 Diesel, and Kev it up to look like this ‘orrible thing……..If Aston Martin can make subtle, swift and stylish Autobahn stormers, then so can Jaguar. This car is an own-goal in my opinion. Given the choice between this as it stands, and an M5, I’d go Bavarian, have the badges removed, and avoid the boy racers at every stop-light……

  6. It is definitely no looker, in my eyes although it is a worthy halo model for promoting the performance credentials of Jaguar’s saloon cars. Considering its top speed is about 18 miles less than a Bentley Continental GT Speed 12, it seems a steal for its asking price. But those awful Playstation spoilers. The Demon Tweaks alloy wheels. The colour. Its nice being poor and not able to afford such an over-indulgence.

  7. Who gives a shit about the spoiler? its ostentatious,brash and arrogant this is no halo model its taking the fight to Mercedes and BMW and kicking thier heads in.

  8. I’m a youngster and no, this looks way too tacky. If they offered a more subtle spoiler and replace the chrome surrounds then it’d look far less like a car from the rising sun… Or as someone mentioned, a Ford Falcon. Lookswise it’s not Jaguar in any sense at all, and I’m all for their current design revolution.. But this is way to much tackiness.. Like the power but it looks cheap.

  9. @9, Marinast,

    The car’s top speed is limited to 186- with over 500bhp on tap, as long as it is not geared like an early 90s Fiat Punto (highly unlikely) then if it was de-restricted entirely it would easily exceed 200. They set 186 as a limit because of the tyres, much in the same way that less powerful cars (yet still potent) are usually limited to 155 for the same reason.

  10. The VXR is slightly over the top, but in my oppinion the Holden Commodore range (without all the apertures all over it)on which it is based is a very good looking car in the flesh I would happily have one (in fact I would say its one of the best looking cars on the market). Monaro BTW is a Holden (GM Australia) Falcon is Ford Australia (and probably in the US as well). But now that you mention the Monaro yes that look is there too. alex

  11. @ Simon H:

    If that is the same car that was used in the New Avengers, then Julian Thompson, one of Jaguar’s senior designers, is a big fan of it, as he disclosed in an interview a number of years ago.

  12. @21 – Yep, the very same. I was bitterly disappointed there were no XJCs at the NEC Classic Car show a couple of weekends ago – my favourite Jag of the lot.

  13. Question is.. has it been to the nurburgring? if so take it out and have it shot. Jags should have near rolls ride quiality levels, and corner like they are on rails. I don;’t want to know what the road is doing or fell every pothole, that means old fasioned rubbish ride, andyone can set a cars suspesnion in concrete and make it ‘handle’ (see german cars for a demonstration) What Jaguar, and the britishc ar industry used to do was make a car ride nicley and handle, whihc was not an easy trick

  14. Simon H: “I’d go Bavarian………”

    NEVER….NEVER….the boring obvious choice for the herds every time. Stand out and be different.

    A BMW is a modern beige Cortina, don’t let them take over. As Flavor Flav said “don’t believe the hype”, or in the case the marketing spivs.

    No one respects a BMW driver!

  15. @24 – “Stand out and be different”

    With what precisely? SAAB – gone. Alfa Romeo – nothing viable until the Giulia (if it ever surfaces – and even then it’ll be part yank), Lancia – a Chrysler in disguise, Volvo – Ok, but I’m a single bloke, and they’re still perceived as a family car, Skoda – nope, SEAT – pullease, Toyboata – ugh……I could go on. As far as the company car list goes the choice is, Audi, BMW, Volvo, Ford, Toyota, VW. Until Jaguar appears on the list, you go for the most efficient (tax and fuel wise) choice – which usually comes with a blue-propeller attached (even outstrips Ford and GM these days on C02, and therefore lower tax). Until someone makes a viable real-world alternative (much in the same way one was needed for the beige Cortina you mention), ze German dominance will continue. I’ll petition Lex Autolease to include the XF (I want a Sport-brake), but until then you’ll keep seeing a proliferation of German tin on the roads I’m afraid.

  16. To all the people who think this is too brash: No one’s forcing you to buy it. If you want an out and out performance car, why not make it look like one? It’s called choice. I wouldn’t be seen dead in one, but I want Jaguar to succeed in the market.

  17. Not for me, but it looks okay. It does remind me too much of the VXR8, which is not really a bad thing. At times I’d like a VXR8, just not every day, and this is going to be more sophisticated and appealing inside.

    There’s not really a “thing” for Jaguar to be. The XKs are credible alternatives to Aston Martin for considerably lower outlay (and affordable used things now, almost banger territory), XJs have been brutish and timid, basic and luxurious, common and classy. The XF is undeniably a fleet weapon and damn good for it.

    So Jaguar making a lairy sports saloon? Good on ’em, and there won’t be any missing it. Just as my Subaru was a dark-green Legacy 4Cam Turbo Estate rather than a blue and gold Impreza, and would want a supercharged V8 XJ to be as understated as possible, the bewinged car-park showoff isn’t to my taste but the performance and underpinnings are.

  18. Sounds promising, but lose the rear spoiler or make it less conspicuous – a more stealthy look has worked for the cars it is going up against over the years.

  19. i like the normal xf but this is just a little to bling bling for me. it looks more ford mondeo than luxury sports express. it might look better if it was in a more restrained colour. that blue is rank on the xkrs that the guy who works next door has. shame that car does not sound as good as his v8 vantage!

  20. It does look very brash. That would be a problem if it was the only XF you could buy, but it isnt. Another nice piece of niche marketing, levering every pound of profit for minimal investment. Its exactly what BMW and Audi does and exactly what Jaguar should be doing as well.

  21. Whats wrong with Monaro’s and VXR8’s ??
    As a former Monaro owner I can say its one of the best cars ive ever owned. Early in the new year I hope to be looking at a VXR8. I supose i’d better quit this forum save upsetting all ye “traditionalists” 🙂

  22. Nothing wrong with them from my point of view! I always wanted a Monaro, in yellow, with big stripes; the VXR8 appeals slightly less with the extra doors.

  23. @35 a) I don’t have, and for that matter wouldn’t spend £80k on any car

    b) Somehow I don’t think this will end up on my company car list

    Otherwise, nothing 🙂

  24. That spoiler is a bit ‘Garyboy’, but otherwise, its a tasty bit of kit. Hopefully it will give the M5 a bit of a kick in the b******s

  25. Drove past an M5 on the M5 tonight… it was looking rather sad for itself all smokey joe-ish on the hard shoulder with the bonnet up and a nasty looking oil puddle out front slowly meandering down the slight gradient… wish I had had my camera I would have asked my passenger to snap it…. It was a beautiful sight though.

    And as Timbo says… the Germanians do make an awfully UN-reliable car as well these days as in fact they always have done in some numbers.

  26. Richard B: “….. It was a beautiful sight though.”

    Would have been a sight to behold. Pity you didn’t get that photo snapped, I would’ve paid money for it and had it blown up (pardon the pun) onto a canvas and adorned my living room wall with it.

    Would also make a pretty good T shirt….mug….bumper sticker….

    I’ve got a collection of photo’s like that such as a row of BWM write offs at the local scrappy, smoking BMW with bonnet up on the side of a London street among others. Couldn’t resist saying to the hapless owner ” I know what’s wrong mate, it’s got a BMW badge on it”. Broken down VW’s are good too, should see the look on the driver’s face when you say “if only everything in life was a reliable……” and “hey mate, my Allegro is still going”.

  27. @Timbo
    I don’t drive a BMW.
    However I find your comments very sad and at worse sick.
    You collect photo’s of written off BMW’s! Get a life!
    Have you ever thought about the people side of write offs/brakdowns?
    Somebody seriously injured? A doctor on his way to an emergency when his BMW breaks down on the hard shoulder?
    “Broken VW’s are good too” When your in the back of a VW ambulance ill yourself, or accompanying a sick loved one will you be praying for it breakdown so that you can add to your photo collection?

  28. There are a lot of ignorant and bitter-sounding people commenting on this car.

    If it sells, brilliant. Am sure the marketing people at Jag. know more about what will sell and what won’t than the naysayers on here.

  29. @24 Timbo.
    You couldn’t be more wrong. Many automotive engineers own BMWs; I own two. One of which is an M5. Not one non-BMW owning engineer I’ve met has derided them.

    BMWs are commonly used in bench-marking.

  30. Timbo,

    You’re an obnoxious xenophobic knob head. Please keep your vile brand of nonsense off this board, crawl back under whatever rock it is you came from, and stop giving genuine car enthusiasts like me a bad name…

  31. I’m very happy with my BMW, Timbo. Don’t get me wrong, I’d rather have an Alfa, or a Jag, but as I said before, circumstances dictate that I have to have a company car. I don’t think I’ll be replacing it with an Allegro anytime soon, so, knock yourself out.

    Incidentally, I had to put up with people like you passing oh, so funny comments on my choice of car (mine, you understand, not yours) when I had both of my Alfas. My ribs used to be sore from the laughter. NOT.

    Oh, and I love the surprised look I get from other motorists when I let them out of side roads – most rewarding!

  32. Whilst there is clearly a lot of bile in this thread, some people like myself dislike this Jag for being garish (in that colour) and overblown, it shouldn’t really be necessary for people saying so to include the caveat that ‘just because I don’t like it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go out and buy it if it floats your boat’.

    Of course this car is good for exports, and for the future of JLR. This sort of thing hardly needs to be said- it should be taken as read that virtually any reader on pages like this wishes JLR well.

    As for the BMW thing- well, whatever pleases you. They don’t appeal to me much, BMW Minis rather less so, but so what? You aren’t spending my money, and as long as you don’t drive like a tit who cares?

  33. Chris – Well said! Incidentally, it doesn’t matter what you drive, it’s whether you’re bothered about what you drive, and how you drive it, that counts.

  34. In a crowded market place the XF RS has to shout to make itself heard so to speak, especially at launch.

    Well done JLR, keep launching good products and grwo the brand, the volume and secure more UK jobs.

    This model will not sell in huge numbers but hopefully will continue to spread the word that Jags can slug it out with the best

  35. Triomatic: “You’re an obnoxious xenophobic knob head”

    Hmmmm, a bit harsh for what was meant as a humour, gone over some heads I notice. Still I won’t return the insults to those who didn’t get it….and believe I still do drive an Allegro, thought that was enough of a clue.

    No Big H, no pictures of trauma, blood or human suffering either.

  36. [IMG]http://i49.tinypic.com/4onph.jpg[/IMG]

    The interior from this car is remarkably un ‘Jag-like’. Looks like it could come from virtually any manufacturer in the D Segment upwards. Nothing particularly wrong with it, but nothing about it says ‘Jaguar’

    Whilst I recognise that buyers were put off by the ‘Olde Worlde’ classic Jaguar pastiche styling of the Ford era exteriors, one thing that Jaguar has always done really well is interiors.

    But this?

  37. Fast Jags need to be BRG 🙂 This shade of blue is too Vauxhall.

    @25

    I feel your pain, the D/E segment has little choice and is dwindling (even Toyota are quietly abandoning it, unless you want an estate car, Accord is all but gone from next year).

    The Lancia/Chrysler 300 I would have a look at though, secretly been a fan of the thing even in last gen ‘Merc with new clothes’ model.

  38. @44
    ‘BMWs are commonly used in bench-marking’
    ahh that explains why modern cars are so crap then, the benchmark is too low. I should iluminate a tad more, dreadfull ride and ugly looks do seem to be rather too common these days

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