Jaguar Land Rover Australia general manager of communications and public relations, Tim Krieger, said the new model will form a vital part of the brand’s revitalised and growing line-up.
Krieger said that while a lot of the hype has been around the new XE compact luxury sedan and the F-Pace SUV, the new XF will once again take it to the big German names that dominate the luxury sedan segment.
“The position on pricing is that we’re the challenger brand, they’re the market leaders,” Krieger said, hinting that the current aggressive strategy that sees Jaguar undercut Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz could be consistent for the heavily revised model, despite a raft of predicted standard equipment enhancements.
“Our pricing will be competitive against the key players – 5 Series, E-Class. We’ll certainly benchmark those guys,” Krieger said. “We will be extremely competitive against the key segment leaders.
“In terms of a line-up, in terms of trim levels – that’s all being developed at the moment. And I would imagine that come the global drive event, which will be in August, we’ll release info on the full line-up,” he said.
Krieger confirmed all four engines that have so far been announced for the XF will be offered locally, and all of them will likely be teamed exclusively to eight-speed ZF automatic transmissions with rear-wheel drive.
The engine range is set to include two diesel drivetrains and two petrol versions at launch.
The diesel offerings will include the new Ingenium 2.0-litre turbo diesel four-cylinder, which replaces the existing 2.2-litre unit.
It produces 120kW of power ad 380Nm of torque. In six-speed manual guise that powertrain uses just 3.9L/100km, making it the most efficient non-hybrid mid-size luxury sedan, according to Jaguar.
However, the eight-speed auto we’ll get uses a little more (4.2L/100km), yet still manages to hit 100km/h from standstill in 8.7 seconds.
A revised 3.0-litre turbo diesel V6 will also be offered, with that unit using 5.5L/100km but producing a walloping 221kW and 700Nm. It is said to be capable of hitting 100km/h in just 6.4sec from standstill.
There is no Ingenium petrol turbo engine yet – it’s still under development – but the existing 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo with 177kW/340Nm will be seen. That engine uses 7.5L/100km, and has a claimed 0-100km/h time of 7.0sec.
The performance-oriented version, the XF S, will come with a 3.0 supercharged V6 engine in two states of tune – 250kW or 280kW – while both produce 450Nm.
It’s the same engine used in the F-Type S, and has claimed consumption of 8.3L/100km, and a claimed 0-100km/h sprint time of 5.4 seconds.
There’s an all-wheel drive version of that model, too, though Australia is unlikely to take it.
The new model is considerably lighter than the car it replaces due to the more intense usage of aluminium in the cars structure and componentry. The base diesel, for instance, is 190 kilograms lighter than before, while the AWD S model is 120kg lighter than its predecessor.
The car itself is shorter than the model it replaces (by 7 millimetres), measuring 4954mm long, 1880mm wide and 1457mm tall. However, it rides on a wheelbase that has been stretched by 51mm (now 2960mm) which Jaguar claims has increased knee room and the lower-set rear seat has also aided rear head room.
Aiding the rear seat ambience, according to Jaguar, is the “sixth light” windows that are positioned just ahead of the rear windscreen pillars.
In the front there are two touchscreen media systems – an 8.0-inch InControl unit and the new 10.2-inch InControl Pro, which the brand claims takes infotainment to “a whole new level”. Niceties include voice controlled mapping and calling, internet app connectivity and browsing, and a Wi-Fi hotspot for passengers to connect to.
There’s also a very Audi-esque 12.3-inch virtual TFT instrument cluster which can be configured to show speedo/tacho, and can also active navigation in wide-screen mode in front of the driver’s eyes. A laser head-up displayed will also be offered.
The boot of the new XF is bigger than before, too, and now equals the 5 Series at 540 litres, and Jaguar says the new larger aperture is designed to help make loading easier, too.
Jaguar XF vehicle line director Ian Hoban said the new model is all about offering more – in terms of refinement, comfort, interior space and technology.
“It delivers more Jaguar. It delivers more XF. It is the new business class benchmark,” he said.
Jaguar global brand director Steven De Ploey said the smaller XE model gave the XF a chance to shine in a different light.
“We had the opportunity to create a more mature and more sophisticated all-in-all, a more focused car. The result, basically, is the most dynamic premium business sedan in its class.
“So, XF no longer is the entry point into the Jaguar range – it very much is the centre of gravity of the Jaguar brand.”