Jaguar is holding The Art of Performance Tour at major cities across the U.S. to launch its new XE model. With a starting price under $35,000, the XE is a feature rich 4 door luxury performance sedan.
This is first all new model since Tata Motors took over Jaguar Land Rover Group (JLR). The XE is Jaguar’s answer to the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes C Class.
What’s interesting is that Tata Motors bought JLR in 2008 from Ford when it was having financial difficulties. Tata makes the Nano which when released in 2009 was the least expensive car in the world at around $2000. With currency fluctuations, the car in dollar terms has come down to $1600.
There were fears that Tata would not understand how to design and manufacture luxury cars. But Tata made JLR a priority and it has thrived ever since with record sales and profits over the last few years.
The XE has several different engines in both gas and diesel. The base is a 2.0 L turbocharged 4 cylinder. For performance enthusiasts a supercharged V6 is available and is the one I drove at the event. Turbocharged engines can have a slight acceleration lag. Superchargers, on the other hand, are running constantly and provide instant acceleration.
I found the acceleration to be robust and instant. Although I only drove on city streets, there were spots where I could open it up. The engine and exhaust whine had a nice sound. Around turns it seemed competent with dampened body roll.
JLR also added a number of other features such as Torque Vectoring, Adaptive Surface Response (ASR), All Surface Progress Control (ASPC), and several different drive modes (Eco, Standard, and Rain/Ice). These features all aid in the XE’s handling and will be discussed in another upcoming video.
All in all the XE packs a great deal of value and will give the 3 Series and CLA a run for their money.