Jaguar XJ D review

More frugal Jaguar XJ sports saloon gets 442lb ft of torque and Supersport looks

Evo rating
Price
from £67,400
  • A great Jag
  • Just not as great as the Supersport

On paper, there seems little reason to envy buyers of the rather wonderful XJ Supersport with its 503bhp supercharged V8. After all, this twin-turbo V6 diesel, which is expected to account for 85 per cent of XJ sales in the UK, is virtually indistinguishable from the outside, and the new 3-litre engine delivers a thumping 442lb ft of torque, almost as much as the V8. Sure, it has ‘only’ 271bhp, but while power grabs the headlines, torque gets the work done, so the diesel should deliver all the kick you need most of the time, with substantially better fuel consumption. And yet…

Don’t get us wrong, the diesel XJ is a very good car. This long-wheelbase ‘Portfolio’ is about as posh as they get and looks just like the Supersport, right down to the 20-inch, lightly polished alloys. Like its supercharged sibling, its ride is on the taut side of comfortable and the car feels light on its toes, both in the corners and when you pin the throttle. It doesn’t sound particularly dieselly either, more like a muted, gruff petrol six, and the big XJ shifts nicely as it works its way through the gears.

Subscribe to evo magazine

Experience the thrill of driving with evo magazine. Subscribe now and get your first 5 issues for £5 or buy the latest issue in all good newsagents!

Trouble is, there isn’t quite the roll and pitch control of the Supersport, nor the exhilarating reach of its V8. The steering feels lighter and the brakes a bit grabbier, too. The SS demonstrates the XJ’s full potential. So if it’s the diesel you need, we advise you not to test drive the Supersport.

Specifications

EngineV6, 2993cc, bi-turbo diesel
Max power271bhp @ 4000rpm
Max torque442lb ft @ 2000rpm
0-606.0sec (claimed)
Top speed155mph (limited)
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Most Popular

Visit/porsche/911/201958/porsche-911-gt3-vs-gt3-rs-vs-gt2-rs-track-battle
Porsche 911

Porsche 911 GT3 vs GT3 RS vs GT2 RS - track battle

Porsche’s GT3, GT3 RS and GT2 RS are the most hardcore of the 911 breed, but pitched head‑to‑head which will we crown champion?
15 Nov 2019
Visit/ferrari/201950/new-ferrari-roma-612bhp-198mph-gt-car-joins-the-range
Ferrari

New Ferrari Roma: 612bhp, 198mph GT car joins the range

Ferrari has expanded its GT car range with the V8 powered Ferrari Roma
14 Nov 2019
Visit/buying-advice/19675/used-car-deals-of-the-week
used cars

Best used cars for sale this week

We’ve delved into the classifieds and chosen our favourite cars for sale this week
15 Nov 2019
Visit/hyundai/201819/hyundai-i30-fastback-n-versus-the-nurburgring
Hyundai i30 N

Hyundai i30 Fastback N versus the Nurburgring

We brought the Hyundai i30 Fastback back to its spiritual home in Germany's Eifel mountains, where there is a racing track you might well have heard o…
7 Oct 2019