Overview & Reviews
The British have a penchant for revering (and some say clinging to) things past -- old buildings and dentistry from the 16th century, warm beer, 50-year-old double-decker Routemasters, the royal family and the Jaguar XJ. For more than 40 years, the XJ's basic styling strayed very little through three generations and several midlife updates. About the wildest thing to happen was the addition of square headlamps in 1990 -- and they were generally met with a chorus of jeers and "cor blimeys!"
That all changed when Jag pulled the covers off its radical next-generation 2011 XJ. Gone was ye olde styling, and in came sexy modern duds unlike anything else on the road. The cabin ditched the stuffy fascia of wood, the ugly green lighting and crotchety old J-gate shifter in favor of a cabin so exquisitely detailed and dramatically designed that it may make a potential Bentley buyer think twice. Really, this would be like Susan Boyle walking into a pub and coming out looking like Keira Knightley. The XJ has truly gone from a forgotten player to a sought-after all-star.
Current Jaguar XJ
The Jaguar XJ is a large luxury sedan available in regular and long-wheelbase (L) body styles. The XJ comes in base, Supercharged and XJR trim levels, while the XJL has the Portfolio, Supercharged and XJR trim levels.
The base XJ and the XJL Portfolio are powered by a supercharged 3.0-liter V6 with 340 horsepower and 332 pound-feet of torque. Rear-wheel drive is standard and these trims are the only ones that offer optional all-wheel drive. This engine features automatic stop-start, which saves fuel by shutting off the engine when the car is stopped momentarily, such as at a traffic light or while in stop-and-go traffic. Upgrading to the XJ Supercharged model gets you a supercharged 5.0-liter V8 with 470 hp and 424 lb-ft of torque, while the XJR boasts a higher-output version of that engine with 550 hp and 502 lb-ft of torque. All engines come matched to an eight-speed automatic transmission.
The Jaguar XJ's interior is exquisite. Not only does its aesthetic design appeal, but the craftsmanship and materials quality are a step beyond those of its impressive rivals. Supple leather, rich wood, tasteful applications of chrome and ice-blue lighting decorate a cabin fit for and literally enjoyed by royalty. In-car electronics are dominated by a large touchscreen, which works OK but doesn't react as quickly to screen-and-knob inputs as BMW's iDrive. The instrument panel is, in fact, a big LCD, and adapts to different driving scenarios and in-use vehicle functions (navigation, for instance).
On the road, few cars balance ride comfort and sporty handling as deftly as the XJ. Even with the big wheels, it glides down the road with sophisticated composure. And yet with its lightweight aluminum chassis, adaptive suspension and sharp steering, the XJ is also deceptively agile and feels considerably smaller when behind the wheel than its pricier flagship sedan competitors do. On the other hand, those rivals also have bigger, more limolike backseats.
Used Jaguar XJ Models
The current generation of the Jaguar XJ debuted for 2011. Both regular and long-wheelbase (L) versions of the rear-wheel-drive luxury sedan were offered. Initially, there were three trim levels: XJ, XJ Supercharged and XJ Supersport. The base XJ came with a 5.0-liter V8 (385 hp and 380 lb-ft of torque) while the XJ Supercharged had a supercharged version (470 hp and 424 lb-ft). The XJ Supersport had a higher-output version of the supercharged V8 (510 hp and 461 lb-ft), but wasn't as performance-focused as the current XJR. All had a six-speed automatic (with manual shift control) and rear-wheel drive and were very quick, with 0-60 mph times in the range of 4.4 to 5.4 seconds. The following year saw some equipment shuffling, such as new reclining and massaging features for the XJL Supersport's rear seat.
For 2013, a supercharged 3.0-liter V6 (340 hp and 332 lb-ft) became the new base engine and it featured automatic stop-start functionality to save fuel when the car was momentarily stopped. All-wheel drive was a new option but it was only available with the V6, while all XJs came with a new eight-speed automatic transmission. There were a couple of new trim levels for the long-wheelbase ("L") XJ: the Portfolio, which came with the 385-hp V8, and the limited-edition Ultimate. The latter was essentially a Supersport with an ultra-swank, two-passenger rear seat compartment. This year also saw updated electronics that included a faster infotainment touchscreen and a new audio system.
These latter XJs are essentially identical to the current lineup with the exception of the Supersport giving way to the more performance-oriented XJR, the XJL Portfolio still having a V8 (versus the 3.0-liter supercharged V6 engine) and the Ultimate trim level being available (discontinued for 2014).
Those interested in an older XJ may want to take a look at one of the previous-generation models covered in a separate Jaguar XJ Series review.
User Reviews:Showing 1 through 10 of 34.00
Fantastic power of black tiger - 2009 Jaguar XJ
By Sirjoe - July 18 - 12:43 am
Since I have had sedan cars, I've never touched something fantastic like this. XJ is the only one that can reach my desire. This black wild animal consists of powerful engine, conservative exterior design (I personally like) and unbelievable performance. In conclusion,XJ will never disappoint you.
Big Blue Beast - 2013 Jaguar XJ
By melancholyman - June 17 - 4:28 am
Always thought I'd wind up with a Mercedes-Benz or Lexus. Looked at E-Class Mercedes and Lexus ES and GS. Found the Mercedes interior disappointing. Sitting in both Lexus models was like sitting inside a computer: soulless and cold. No personality or warmth at all. Sitting in my AWD XJ is like being in a leather chair in an English gentleman's club. Plenty of power, excellent handling. Design and build quality both superb. A bigger car than I actually wanted, but, when we sat in it, my wife and I just looked at each other and knew we'd found our car.
Fast ,Luxurious and Beautiful - 2014 Jaguar XJ
By xjr - May 22 - 8:04 pm
I have owned my 2014 XJR LWB for a year and I love it ! Jags have always built the most beautiful sedans and the new XJR makes its German competition look like the tanks (with go faster wheels) they really are . The power and handling of this luxury sedan has to be experienced to be believed . It easily compares to top performing sports cars but with the discomfort . Drive one you'll see !
This car turns head for sure! - 2011 Jaguar XJ
By Ralph Alcantar Jr - October 4 - 7:00 pm
The new design caused me to trade in my LS460/Lexus and change my mind on the purchase of a S500/Mercedes after one test drive. I would have never considered the old Jaguar design. This car attracts so much attention and persuaded me as a younger generation buyer. Fun to drive and handles great.
Watch out for that Cat! - 2011 Jaguar XJ
By Dreski - May 11 - 12:40 am
The new design is an eye catcher for sure. If you're a luxury car driver, the SuperCharged will definitely place you in a status of your own. I love the drive feel, when all you have to do is slightly place your foot on the accelerator and watch out, you may be getting pulled over b4 you know it. It's a shame how other luxury manufacturers either charge you as options for what is standard in the SuperCharged. Plus you have more interior options to choose from then say, MB S550.
Just got mine last Monday - 2011 Jaguar XJ
By ecurry - January 29 - 10:54 pm
I have owned 4 Mercedes Benz's and 2 Lexus'. I owned two S500's ( an 01 and an 02), an 03 SL 500 and a '10 E350 that we recently purchased earlier this year. I still have my '02 S500 and I love that car. I purchased all my vehicles new. Prior to this new change, I wouldn't even look at a Jaguar. There was nothing exciting about the vehicle at all. ( The same way I feel about Lexus now. Its a safe boring car.) I had actually gone to the dealership to look at the Panamera when the salesman told me I should look at the new XJ. He walked me over there and I was done!!! This is the sexiest car ever built. Go ahead and spend more money if you wish, you will NOT get more car!!!
Service Nightmare - 2011 Jaguar XJ
By Dissapointed - July 8 - 10:00 am
I've had my XJL SC 16 weeks. 2 weeks after taking delivery, it was in the shop to have multiple rattles and pops repaired. 3 weeks later, I got it back, free of pops and rattles. Yesterday, I got in the car and the audio system was only putting out sound on the passenger side. Hoped it was a fluke, but no, same problem this AM. And these aren't the only issues- Edmunds only gives me so much space I cannot deny that this car is compelling to drive. On the days that everything works, it is a true pleasure. The build quality and reliability are abysmal though.
Had to have it! - 2011 Jaguar XJ
By Andy - May 26 - 10:00 am
We had been looking to replace my wife's 2005 Infiniti Q-45 which was coming off lease. We looked at the MB S-550 and the BMW 7 series. Because of the pricing of both, I really thought we would wind up with a used 550 or 7 series. That was until I saw the Jag XJL. For basically the same price as a 1-2 yr. old MB or 7 series, we wound up with a fabulous car that looks great, performs unbelievably and is way ahead in all aspects when compared to the competitors.
Best car I ever owned.....so far. - 2011 Jaguar XJ
By BigMac - January 16 - 6:03 pm
Over the last ten years I've owned an S430, an A8L, an S550 and an XF. The new 2011 XJ is superior to all. Interior, exterior, ride, comfort and price! Economy? Drove 130 miles to Atlantic City and got 29 miles to a gallon! This car is a monster.
Lucky to be alive - 2013 Jaguar XJ
By trish78 - December 23 - 7:19 pm
I've had since Dec 2003('s done 50,000 miles and has been one careful driver - me- and sevice and checked by Jag dealer regularly. On Wed 13th November 2013 I was driving on a dual carriageway at 60mph when the car suddenly accelerated. I thought the cruise control was on and braked to cancel it, but the car just kept going faster. I tried switching to manual and forcing it into lowest gear with no effect, pumping brake and engaging the hand brake , but the car just kept going faster and I was rapidly approaching other vehicles. So I moved into the fast lane, which was clear, but then two cars pulled out in front of me to overtake a lorry. At 90mph I hit themand am lucky to be alive