Review: 2016 Jaguar XF 35t

– Cleveland, Ohio

While the big German luxury automakers – Mercedes-Benz, BMW, and Audi – chase each other in every segment imaginable, some automakers take a different tack. Lexus is trying to make its mark with wild designs. Acura has launched a new halo car in the NSX. And then there’s Jaguar, which doesn’t take a different tack than those German companies, but rather finds differentiation in more subtle ways. The XF is a perfect example. There’s nothing wholly unique about it compared to its popular rivals; it’s as comfortably luxurious and exhilaratingly sporty as they are. But it comes with an image that’s more appealing to mavericks than management types, and therein lies its appeal.

Pros

  • The XF is a pretty kitty. I dare say it’s the most outwardly attractive midsize luxury sport sedan you can buy. There’s nothing complicated or clever going on with its design, and there’s not too much chrome, either. It’s just a well-proportioned, classically styled four-door that, because of the relatively small numbers that are sold, always looks fresh amidst a sea of rings, roundels, and stars. And those 20-inch Star alloy wheels, which cost an extra $1,500 on my R Sport tester, fit the XF’s sporting character perfectly. My wife’s assessment: “Handsome.”
  • The suspension of this XF 35t R Sport deserves a gentleman’s clap for how adaptable it is. This car sports Jaguar’s optional Adaptive Dynamics system ($1,000) that adjusts the suspension to road conditions and your driving style i...