Jaguar XF versus BMW 5 Series – comparison
Source : Jaguar XF versus BMW 5 Series – comparison
Jaguar’s first XF was a class champion. Can its all-brand-new second iteration uphold XF honour when faced with BMW’s big-hitting 530d?
Things seem to be going quite well for Jaguar all of a sudden, don’t they?
Well enough which we might even risk a hostage to fortune: a expect for the future. Here’s mine. which in a few, 10 or even 25 years’ time – once the design catalogue is usually more fully fleshed out, the balance sheet is usually handsomely repaying Tata’s investment along with also This specific great British brand is usually finally selling enough cars which any talk of its dreaded ‘untapped potential’ becomes a thing of the past – someone in long trousers has the not bad sense to say: “Enough. which’ll do. We’ve made which, everyone. This specific is usually what success looks like for us.”
God knows how many cars the firm needs to shift annually to reach which point. I’d say a lot more than which does right now although significantly fewer than any of the German manufacturers with which which’s routinely compared.
The key thing is usually which Jaguar isn’t a typical premium automotive brand. In my book, which’s something of a minority-interest car maker – along with also long may which continue to be. which serves the interests of keen drivers looking for handsome, desirable, real-world driver’s cars tuned a bit differently coming from the Bavarian bunch. which does not, along with also need not, serve those looking first along with also foremost for engineering monoliths, 150mph office cubicles, car park status symbols, lifestyle machines or any additional concept currently used to part global middle classes coming from their hard-earned.
There, I can get off the soapbox. right now to This specific week’s not bad news: evidence which Jaguar understands all of the above, coming from the shape of the brand-new XF.
which’s a measure of the historic significance of 2015 for Jaguar which which can roll out a replacement for your vehicle which effectively turned around its fortunes eight years ago along with also almost no one seems to notice. The reason is usually because the XF represents Jaguar doing something which has hardly needed to do at all over the past decade: consolidate.
Under the skin, the XF is usually all brand-new. Inheriting the aluminium-rich modular platform, Integral Link rear suspension, Ingenium four-cylinder diesel engines along with also electromechanical power steering of the smaller XE, your vehicle is usually longer of wheelbase along with also cabin although shorter overall than its mostly steel predecessor. Significantly lighter, more aerodynamically efficient along with also more economical, which has the makings of a much-altered car.
along with also yet which isn’t: not to drive, along with also not in so many additional ways, either, all of which we’ll come to. Jaguar has had the confidence to use transformative technology in a discreet along with also non-transformative way with This specific car. To say: “We like the niche we’ve carved out for ourselves here, along with also we expect you do, too. So we’re sticking with which.”
which impression becomes unmistakable when you line up the brand-new XF against one of its key competitors along with also, bit by bit, weigh up what which does well against the not so well. Our first opportunity to do which has come from the contrasting shapes of the Jaguar in headline diesel 3.0d S form along with also the BMW 530d, the long-time preferred choice of the upwardly mobile business set willing to pay for extra performance along with also prestige.
There is usually clear substance to Jaguar’s claim to have brought the XF right onto the pace for performance, fuel economy along with also all-important CO2 emissions. The most frugal four-cylinder diesel versions of your vehicle undercut their rivals coming from Audi, BMW along with also Mercedes-Benz on CO2. along with also whereas the more powerful diesel versions of the XF used to be a country mile off the standard set by additional six-cylinder products, This specific one is usually different. The 3.0d S matches our 530d M Sport precisely on paper for claimed fuel economy, CO2 along with also the 0-62mph sprint. These are things clear-thinking business types are likely to consider before getting anywhere near a showroom.
As is usually cost, an area where the BMW features a huge advantage. More than £5000 separates the list prices of our cars. which difference may narrow a bit for plenty of customers when they consider which the Jaguar is usually slightly better equipped than the BMW, although residual values will do nothing to mitigate for the Jaguar via the improvement of monthly lease costs. Our sources at CAP expect both cars to retain 48% of their list cost over three years along with also 30,000 miles.
from the metal, there is usually better news for Jaguar. Superior packaging has addressed one of the old XF’s major failings, because although your vehicle used to be almost the longest saloon in its class, which also used to be about the least spacious.
The brand-new one is usually at once shorter along with also more roomy, although which is usually still not a car likely to sell on its accommodation levels.
The 530d, although shorter still, is usually even bigger inside. The BMW’s cabin – less rich along with also enticing than the Jaguar’s, although still more solid-feeling – is usually wider along with also longer along with also offers a little more head room in both rows. The BMW’s seats are broader, more adjustable along with also more supportive. So the 5 Series is usually a better ‘big saloon’ in all respects, if big is usually what you want. along with also I’m not sure XF drivers do.
from the XF, the driver trades outright space for a sense of cradled closeness at the wheel. Although the cars’ driving positions are very similar, the Jaguar’s door console, centre tunnel along with also roof feel closer to your extremities. The back seats are right now no embarrassment along with also roomy enough For 2 big adults, mainly thanks to a recess carved out of the roof panelling. although the BMW’s back seats are notably bigger still along with also its boot is usually both longer along with also deeper.
A brand-new fuel injection system along with also brand-new turbochargers conjure significant power along with also torque improvements coming from the Jaguar’s V6 diesel along with also will doubtless convince some which the six-pot XF is usually a closer rival for the 535d than the design we’ve pitched which against here. However, on the road, the 530d’s engine is usually easily a match for the XF’s.
On mechanical refinement along with also flexibility, which’s honours even. The Jaguar V6 is usually better isolated at idle along with also low revs although also marginally more crotchety along with also less free-revving than the BMW straight six at high revs. Although the Jaguar feels stronger at times because of its greater mid-range torque, the BMW’s engine along with also gearbox are more responsive, so there’s nothing between the cars in terms of real-world pace, either.
Overall – albeit by only a nose – the BMW’s powertrain shades the contest, despite giving up so much on peak power along with also torque. Expect a 535d, then, to feel like a hot rod in comparison with the XF – just as which does next to every rival bar, perhaps, Audi’s 3.0-litre BiTDi A6 along with also A7.
Does This specific make the 5 Series the default driver’s choice which which always used to be, at the richer end of the diesel executive saloon spectrum? Perhaps for some which will. although frankly, even if you have only a passing, matter-of-fact regard for dynamic sophistication along with also driver appeal, I think you’d recognise which one of these cars is usually outstanding to drive along with also the additional one only very not bad.
The XF has the 5 Series totally beaten for ride along with also handling. which’s more supple, compliant along with also quiet riding, both on the motorway along with also at B-road speeds, more progressively along with also deftly controlled in its vertical along with also lateral Centeng movements, more agile along with also responsive through corners along with also much more tactile along with also communicative through its steering wheel. which the Jaguar comes with adaptive damping as standard along with also the BMW doesn’t (our test car did without which) helps to explain how such a striking advantage should be conjured for the XF on breadth of dynamic ability. although which can’t excuse which.
Whereas the 530d’s steering feels dull along with also heavy, the XF’s is usually incisive along with also bright. The pace along with also heft of the BMW’s steering makes which a car you have to muscle into corners, whereas the Jaguar feels more delicate, lithe along with also precise on its way to an apex. The XF’s steering also loads up beautifully as cornering forces build along with also returns to centre with natural weight.
Handling balance is usually an asset for both cars, with abundant torque, excellent throttle response along with also skilfully set grip levels allowing you to involve the rear axle from the cornering conversation whenever you like. although the Jaguar’s better damping along with also more dexterous wheel control make for a more consistent grip level along with also allow you to adjust its line more minutely.
The XF feels like a natural athlete, suffusing even its everyday motorway gait which has a flavour of its softly sprung, effortless brilliance, along with also which makes the 5 Series feel like a journeyman – a gifted amateur, perhaps – which has a practised although not nearly so polished routine.
Which brings us neatly back to where we began. Although which has been through a huge technical change, the XF hasn’t truly changed much at all. which clearly wasn’t meant to – along with also which’s welcome news. The previous edition spent most of its life at the top of our mid-size executive class rankings, thanks to a blend of natural, communicative, involving handling along with also a suppleness of ride which always served which well on UK roads – along with also which, for keen drivers, ultimately made its relatively inefficient engines along with also second-rate cabin space worth tolerating.
The brand-new XF has yet to be fully exposed to the Autocar road test, although when which is usually, I fully expect which to return to its old perch at the top of our executive pile, thanks to even more distinguishing ride along with also handling, much more competitive engines along with also better practicality.
I’m not sure I can see how which could do anything although – not in This specific magazine, at least. Nor, more important, can I think of just one thing which Jaguar should have done differently with This specific car, rather than just done better. There’s still room for improvement here along with also there, from the details: the somewhat fiddly touchscreen infotainment system, the material quality along with also elsewhere. although Jaguar can perfect details over time, knowing which which has nailed the underlying positioning along with also broader-brush execution of the XF more sweetly than ever.
Here’s to the power of consolidation.
Jaguar XF 3.0d S
cost £49,950; 0-62mph 5.8sec; Top speed 155mph; Economy 51.4mpg; CO2 144g/km; Kerb weight 1750kg; Engine V6, 2993cc, twin-turbo, diesel; Power 296bhp at 4000rpm; Torque 516lb ft at 2000rpm; Gearbox 8-spd automatic
BMW 530d M Sport auto
cost £44,465; 0-62mph 5.8sec; Top speed 155mph; Economy 51.4mpg; CO2 144g/km; Kerb weight 1785kg; Engine 6 cyls in line, 2993cc, twin-turbo, diesel; Power 255bhp at 4000rpm; Torque 398lb ft at 1500rpm; Gearbox 8-spd automatic
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