2016 Jaguar XJ Performance

$40,518 - $70,578

2016 Jaguar XJ Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2016 Jaguar XJ was new.


Performance: 8.6

The 2016 Jaguar XJ is well-suited for jaunts around town, according to critics, but they say that it also has more than enough power to provide thrills on the open road. The XJ handles well for a car its size and provides a quiet, firm ride, though a few critics think it rides uncomfortably on rough roads. The sharp steering and sturdy brakes inspire confidence when cornering.

  • "As before, the XJR combines the sort of effortless low-down performance that luxury-sedan buyers expect with the ability to deliver truly startling pace at very little notice." -- Car and Driver
  • "The Jaguar image is one of effortless speed, and the 2016 XJ's gracious road manners don't disappoint." -- Edmunds
  • "No matter the trim level, the XJ promises to be one serious sports sedan. With a relatively low curb weight - courtesy of its aluminum-intensive construction - the sedan's prowess on curvy roads belies its jumbo-sized dimensions." -- Left Lane News (2015)
  • "On the road, the Jaguar XJ is one of the most engaging full-size luxury sedans on the market." -- AutoTrader (2015)
  • "Just like the V-8 XJs, the V-6 model feels nimbler and livelier than many smaller, supposedly sportier cars. That's a credit to both its lightweight aluminum construction and the masterful chassis tuning Jaguar seems to do better than anyone else." -- Automobile Magazine (2013)

Acceleration and Power

The XJ R-Sport and XJL Portfolio come standard with a supercharged 3.0-liter V6 engine that puts out 340 horsepower. The XJ Supercharged and XJL Supercharged feature a supercharged 5.0-liter V8 that produces 470 horsepower. An eight-speed automatic transmission is standard on all models. The base XJ gets an EPA-estimated 18/27 mpg, which is average for the class.

The high-performance XJR and XJR LWB trims feature a supercharged 5.0-liter V8 that puts out 550 horsepower. According to Jaguar, the XJR will accelerate from zero to 60 mph in 4.4 seconds and has a top speed of 174 mph.

The V6 delivers ample power for most drivers, and the V8-powerd models can really move when you hit the gas. The eight-speed transmission delivers smooth, timely shifts and helps to maximize the engine's potential whether driving around town or blazing down the highway.

  • "The eight-speed automatic transmission shifts intelligently: it's unobtrusive when asked to waft and acts with appropriate aggression when required." -- Car and Driver
  • "The supercharged V6 pulls strongly, offers decent fuel economy and will hit the sweet spot for most buyers. It sounds great, too. But if it's outright power you crave, either of the beefy supercharged V8 engines will deliver." -- Edmunds
  • "The supercharged V6 is nice enough and gets much better fuel economy (with rear-wheel drive), but the siren call of those V8s would be too much for us to resist. Acceleration in the XJ Supercharged and XJR is astounding in both its force and immediacy." -- AutoTrader (2015)
  • "Acceleration, even with the V6, is a thoroughly satisfying event, and the ZF 8-speed transmission makes the journey all that much more enjoyable. However, if you want to be immersed in the total Jaguar experience, having one of the V8 engines beneath the bonnet is still the best choice." -- Kelley Blue Book (2014)
  • "Keep the engine in the power band and it's more than capable of handling any traffic situation with ease. When loping around town, simply dial it back to D and the tranny seamlessly runs the gears up and down the ratios." -- Motor Trend (2013 V6)

Handling and Braking

Rear-wheel drive is standard on the XJ and all-wheel drive is available. The ride is quiet and firm, but test drivers disagree about how comfortably the XJ rides on bumpier roads. The XJ is more agile than some class rivals, and its responsive steering and strong brakes contribute to a somewhat sporty ride that is uncommon for a car this size.

  • "Quiet as they are, however, both the XJL Portfolio and XJR we drove still had trouble damping out harsh road impacts. Aluminum construction makes the XJ lighter than it looks, and the Jag has an agility that some rivals can't match." -- Edmunds
  • "Under normal commuting conditions, the XJ has a tauter ride than some in this class, but it filters out harsh impacts satisfactorily." -- AutoTrader (2015)
  • "… steering feel is direct and communicative, the brakes are strong, it corners well, and otherwise handles its dynamic business. This car is sorted, and feels smaller than it is where it counts, from behind the wheel." -- Motor Trend (2013)
  • "XJs feel quite athletic for such large cars. Steering is properly weighted with good feel." -- Consumer Guide (2013)

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