Vehicle: 2011 Jaguar XF Supercharged
Specs: 5.0L Supercharged V8 (470 horsepower, 424 lb.-ft. torque)
0-100kmh as tested: 4.9 seconds
Est. Market Value: $11,000 - $14,000
We recently tested the latest Jaguar XF and were left a little disappointed, especially since we loved the first generation XF so dearly. Luckily, one of our readers was gracious enough to lend his 2011 Jaguar XF Supercharged so that we could relive the XF’s former glory, as well as directly compare the two generations. Special thanks to Mike for trusting us with his baby!
With a captivating and stylish design, comfortable ride, sporty handling, and a glorious V8 under the hood, the 2011 Jaguar XF manages to impresses both onlookers and its passengers, while simultaneously providing its driver exhilarating fun. This hidden British gem of a sedan still holds up today as one of the most fun mid-size sedans out there that can also chauffeur occupants calmly when needed, and leaves us that the hoping next XF refresh will recapture what made the first XF so great and return to its former glory.
Man do we miss this glorious V8 engine. Back in 2011, Jaguar made the decision to offer its 385 hp 5.0L V8 as STANDARD (before then, a 300 hp V6 was standard), with the lineup topping out with the ridiculous 510 hp Supercharged V8 found in the XF-R. Frankly it’s a little sad to see Jag go from offering these amazing and huge engines back in the day, to resorting to soulless turbo 4-cylinders today for emissions and fuel economy's sake. As the old adage goes, there simply is no replacement for displacement, and these massive V8 engines really help make the old XF feel a lot more special than the rest. Not even the Supercharged V6 found in today’s XF S simply can recapture the immensely satisfying feeling and sound of a huge V8 thundering down the road.
With large engines comes large power, and this particular example of XF is the middle-of-the-pack Supercharged V8, producing a whopping 470 hp and hustling this British luxury sedan to 100km/h in an impressive 4.9 seconds. A luxurious ride is still prioritized though leaving its V8 roar mostly contained within the engine bay, so if you want more drama go for the bonkers performance-oriented XF-R.
Unsurprisingly, the rest of the driving experience in the 2011 XF is very similar to the latest model, delivering surprisingly sharp handling and lively responsive steering during spirited driving, while still managing to remain stable, composed, and easy to drive during everyday cruising. And while its 6-speed auto is considered average by modern standards, back in 2011 this was one of the quicker transmissions out there.
Now this is a shocker; the interior of this first generation XF has in our opinion, aged better than the newest one… Don’t get me wrong, its missing a lot of tech and no where near as feature-packed as the latest iteration, but the design is very distinct from competitors, eye-catching with its generous use of wood and solid aluminium (as opposed to a centre console slathered piano black), and interestingly feels noticeably better built too with better materials. Beyond the aging infotainment system and lack of tech, this cabin holds up extremely well and still impresses with a few flashy party tricks up its sleeve; including the trademark air vents that rotate open to present themselves when turned on (the new one only has them on the side now), and a gear selector knob that rises to greet you.
When it debuted in 2007, the Jaguar XF brought with it a radically new design language for the brand. The sleek yet timeless design was arguably the most stunning amongst its era of rivals, and still holds up respectably today, having aged better than other mid-size luxury sedans. The fact that the latest 2020 XF (as well as other models) bears a striking resemblance to this decade-old design is a testament to how lasting of an impact the first generation XF's design has had.
While a used XF can be an amazing bargain (currently hovering around the $12K CAD mark depending on condition), they're not exactly cheap to run or maintain, so budget accordingly if you want to take the plunge. According to the owner, repairs have been frequent and pricey, and that combined with the thirsty V8 engine makes for absurdly high running costs. To him, the combination of the luxury-smooth ride and exhilarating driving experience more than makes up for its high running costs, but even he reckons that if it weren't for his trusty mechanic friend (who cuts him great deals) and his short daily commute, he may have moved into something more economical by now.