For those who love the performance and versatility of a sport sedan, the introduction of the second- generation Jaguar XF is a welcome event. While the newest Jag features fresh exterior skin, much of what’s new is hidden from sight. The big story is a new aluminum-intensive architecture that offers considerable weight savings as well as improved vehicle dynamics. The XF moves up in the Jaguar lineup in terms of size and luxury to make space for the upcoming new entry-level XE which goes on sale next year.
In a special event just before the official debut at the 2015 New York International Auto Show, Jaguar provided a sneak peek at the new XF in New York’s Flatiron district. With traffic and tour busses passing by, the XF was revealed with the help of Christina Hendricks, who plays Joan Harris on the hit AMC TV series “Mad Men.”
The XF carries forward expected Jaguar styling cues — there will be no mistaking it for any other vehicle. With a coupe-like profile, clean lines and stylish LED headlights, the new XF fits nicely into the Jaguar lineup.
The new XF’s advanced architecture consists of 75 percent aluminum, enabling weight savings of 132 pounds on RWD models and 265 pounds on AWD variants. With this redesign of the XF, the entire Jaguar line now features aluminum-intensive construction.
Although the new XF’s overall dimensions haven’t changed much compared to its predecessor, the differences are significant. Despite being 0.3 inches shorter and 0.1 inches lower, the new car’s additional two inches of wheelbase have noticeably improved rear legroom and knee room.
The XF’s interior is a pleasant combination of sumptuous materials, luxurious finishes and fine Jaguar craftsmanship complementing new high-tech features — including a configurable 12.3-inch TFT instrument cluster and a laser head-up display for the driver.
With its all-new Jaguar InControl Touch system, the luxury marque claims the XF will have the most advanced Infotainment and connectivity it has ever offered. The system features a standard 8-inch touchscreen or the optional InControl Touch Pro with a 10.2-inch widescreen display. InControl Touch Pro employs a solid-state drive, a quad-core processor, and runs on an ultra-fast Ethernet connection. Jaguar claims the system delivers incredible graphics, fast response times and truly exceptional performance.
The XF will launch with a choice of two supercharged V6 engines — one putting out 340 horsepower with 332 lb-ft of torque, the other bumping up to 380 horses with torque remaining unchanged. Both engines are teamed with an 8-speed automatic transmission.
Another benefit of the aluminum-intensive structure is increased torsional stiffness. With a sophisticated front double wishbone and rear Integral link suspension combined with a 50/50 weight balance, the new XF should have excellent agility and driving dynamics.
The XF will be available with a new AWD system that features torque on demand. The transfer case uses a chain drive instead of gears, which Jaguar says is light, quiet and efficient. The XF will also utilize an advanced control system first introduced in the Jaguar F-TYPE AWD called Intelligent Driveline Dynamics. IDD allows the car to provide the dynamics and handling of a rear-wheel-drive car while still retaining the traction and performance benefits of all-wheel drive.
Additional Traction Assistance
Adding to the prowess provided by the XF’s AWD system is what Jaguar calls an All-Surface Progress Control system. Developed for low-speed driving in adverse conditions, this system manages the brakes and throttle to provide additional traction — especially useful when accelerating from a standstill on slick roads.
Made in Merry England
The all-new 2016 Jaguar XF will be built at the Jaguar Land Rover Castle Bromwich plant alongside the all-aluminum Jaguar F-TYPE and Jaguar XJ. Look for the new XF to arrive in U.S. showrooms this fall.