Used Jaguar XJ Review
- Unique styling
- Class-leading handling
- Powerful engines
- Not the most refined
- Disappointing interior quality
- Poor rear headroom
Iconic, stylish, luxury limo
The Jaguar XJ is one of the most iconic cars still in existence. The XJ has developed a lot since its first introduction in 1968. It has embraced modern technology over the years, and the latest XJ is more technologically advanced than ever. With a new contemporary design, the XJ has shelved the stiff upper lip styling of previous models, catapulting the XJ into the 21st century. Used by everyone from the Queen to the Prime Minister, the XJ is a car that is a genuine British institution. There are few luxury limos that are quite as prestigious as the unmistakeable Jaguar XJ.
Excellent design let down by disappointing quality
A car in the luxury limo class needs to have an exceptional interior, and unfortunately the XJ doesn’t quite have the same quality as its German rivals. Nevertheless, it’s well-designed, and there’s a fair amount of storage space.
The dashboard of the XJ really does look contemporary, especially when you compare it with its predecessor's. It looks genuinely modern, but unfortunately the quality on display isn’t quite to the standard we’d expect for such a luxury car. The majority of the dashboard uses exceptional materials, but lower down the dash there are some hard plastics. These would be fine on a cheaper car, but compare it with the Audi A8 and it just doesn’t stack up. Controls also aren’t as well damped as on its German rivals, though they are at least well-placed.
Another area in which the XJ doesn’t quite match its rivals is in its storage space. The 479 litre boot capacity is big enough for most, and there’s more than enough room for a full set of golf clubs. However, compare it with the Audi A8 (520 litres), and the BMW 7 Series (515 litres) and the XJ doesn’t look quite so impressive. There’s also limited headroom in the back seats, so it’s not the ideal luxury limo.
Specification levels are understandably quite generous in the XJ. Even the entry-level Luxury trim comes with all-round heated leather seats, four-zone climate control, parking sensors, and a touchscreen infotainment system. This system isn’t the most modern on the market, but it does at least include a DAB radio, sat-nav, and Bluetooth connectivity.
The interior of the XJ is a little bit disappointing compared to rivals. It’s still extremely luxurious, but it’s not as impressive as any of its German competitors.
On The Road
Class-leading handling, but average refinement
One area in which the XJ eclipses all of its rivals is in its driving experience. No car in the luxury limo class is anywhere near as fun to drive as the XJ. For such a big car it feels extremely agile, there’s lots of grip, steering offers plenty of feedback, and there’s little to no body roll. It’s extremely impressive, so much so that those getting chauffeured in the back will want to jump in the front and take the XJ for a spin.
Suspension and Chassis
Whilst the XJ might be fun to drive, it does compromise the car’s comfort levels. It’s obviously not an uncomfy car to be in, but the very worst of road surfaces, potholes, and speed bumps all filter through into the cabin. For drivers this isn’t going to be an issue, as it’s barely noticeable behind the wheel, but for chauffeured passengers it’s not going to be as comfortable as a Mercedes S-Class.
Gearbox options in the XJ come only in one guise. An 8-speed automatic is fitted throughout the range, and it suits the XJ perfectly. It’s smooth, refined, and responds quickly when you need to accelerate to overtake slower cars on the motorway.
Powerful refined engines throughout the range
When it comes to deciding how you want to power your XJ you’ve got three options. There are two petrol engines, and one diesel, with all having more than enough power. Latest XJs are also a lot greener than before, but they’re not what you’d call eco-friendly.
If it’s power that you want from your XJ, you’re spoilt for choice. All engines in the range have plenty of grunt, but the most powerful model is undoubtedly the petrol-powered 5 litre V8, which produces an eye-watering 550bhp. That’s supercar power, in a luxury limo. It’ll catapult you from 0-62mpg in just 4.4 seconds. For a car the size and weight of the XJ that’s unbelievably impressive. Even the lowest powered 3.0d V6 diesel only takes 5.9 seconds, so you’re unlikely going to be disappointed with the pace and power of the XJ.
Eco-friendly buyers don’t usually go for luxury limos, but the XJ range is reasonably green for a car in this class. The model that is best for the environment is the 3.0d V6 diesel, which produces 149g/km of CO2. That’s not going to win over any tree-huggers, but it won’t cost too much in road tax each year. This model is also the best for money savers. Jaguar claims that this model will achieve an average of 49.6mpg, which is incredibly good value for money for such a big car.
Whichever engine you choose to go for in your XJ, you’re not going to be disappointed. There’s enough power in all the engines, so it might be worth considering the ‘low-powered’ diesel as it offers the greatest day-to-day value for money. True petrolheads will obviously be drawn to the monstrous 5.0 V8 though.
Full marks in NCAP safety tests, and an exhaustive list of safety equipment
Like nearly every car in its class, the Jaguar XJ easily achieved the highest possible 5-star NCAP safety rating. With scores of 92% in adult safety, 84% in child safety, and 80% in pedestrian safety, the XJ is safer than all of its German rivals. It truly is a class-leader, and you’ll also get six airbags, emergency brake assist, a lane departure warning system, and an emergency pop-up bonnet. There’s also the Highway pack for those who want an even safer XJ. This adds blind-spot monitoring and traffic sign recognition.
Value for money
Good for the class, as long as you avoid the cost of new-car depreciation
The Jaguar XJ obviously isn’t the cheapest car to run, as no luxury limos are. Nevertheless, it’s pretty good for the class, though this depend on which model you choose to go for. Sensible buyers will go for the 3.0d V6 model, as it offers impressive fuel efficiency, and relatively low CO2 emissions. Avoid the 5.0 V8 unless you’ve got very deep pockets.
Insurance costs in the XJ are also understandably expensive. The XJ isn’t a cheap car full stop, and insurance will cost a lot of money each year. The best value XJ is the 3.0d V6 model, which is in group 48, whilst the most expensive is the top of the range 5.0 V8 XJR, which is in the highest group 50.
Depreciation is a large factor with the Jaguar XJ, but only if you choose to buy from new. With first year depreciation as high as 40%, you’re better off opting for an inspected used equivalent.
The Jaguar XJ is a British icon for good reason. It has always epitomised the very essence of British luxury, but the latest model is a little different. Interior quality doesn’t match German rivals, and it’s not the most refined ride either. It is however an incredible car to drive, exceptionally good-looking, and features some mind-blowingly good engines.
Buying a used Jaguar XJ online with Carspring
If you’re after a used Jaguar XJ for sale, it can all feel like a bit of an ordeal. What, with long days spent around gigantic car supermarkets, or time spent trawling through classified websites, looking for that ideal used XJ. Carspring makes it simple. Buy your next used Jaguar XJ online with the touch of a button. Simply decide on the model you want and choose how you want to pay.
Looking to finance your used Jaguar? Not a problem, we work with our carefully selected finance partners to ensure that, if you’re paying monthly for your used Jaguar XJ, you know you’re getting the best rates. What’s more, with any Carspring used XJ, you also get our 14-day money-back guarantee and 6 months’ free Carspring Warranty. Plus, you don’t have to leave your home. We’ll deliver your used Jaguar to you at a time and place of your choice.
*This is an approximate figure based on the range of the car’s list price and the AA’s average 1st-year depreciation cost of 40%.
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