What is it?An XF with more frugal running costs, but a handling pack, large wheels and various bodywork addenda to ensure you don’t miss out on all the fun an XFR can dish up. Technical highlightsThe updated 3-litre V6 turbodiesel is good for 271bhp and a thumping 442lb ft of torque, while covering 42 miles for every gallon of the black stuff. The Aerodynamic Pack costs £1500 and for this you get the side sills from the XFR and black mesh grilles. For another £500 you can add the LED running lights, but it’s the Dynamics Pack that intrigues most. It costs £1250 and includes huge 20-inch ‘Volans’ five-spoke wheels and the Adaptive Dynamics system. The software of which analyses the chassis and driver inputs 500 times a second and uses the resultant information to improve handling without apparently sacrificing comfort.
What’s it like to drive?You do get one of the above, but not both. Handling is improved by the Dynamics pack, but there is a small reduction in driver comfort. With the system the XF DS is more positive on the way into a corner, particularly with the nose, but you will feel ridges and bumps a little more. It could be argued that the XF has so much built-in comfort that the sacrifice is small enough to be insignificant. How does it compare?Very well. Of course you won’t get the fireworks dished up by the XFR, but it’s a good compromise between executive comfort, a thoroughly entertaining chassis and sensible running costs
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Anything else I need to know?It draws a surprising amount of attention from other road users, it has only 19lb ft less torque than the XFR and the dash to 60mph takes only 1.2 seconds longer.
|Engine||V6, 2993cc, turbodiesel|
|Max power||271bhp @ 4000rpm|
|Max torque||442lb ft @ 2000rpm|
|Top speed||155mph (limited)|
|On sale||Now, £38,600|