Can Jag Beat BMW? Jaguar XF vs BMW 550i @ the Track
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Last May, the newly introduced Jaguar XF surprised us. It went head to
head with the best midsize luxury sedans from Germany and came out on top.
It was fast, comfortable and surprisingly competent through turns, but of
course, that was the top-of-the-line supercharged model.
For 2010, the Jaguar XF gets a pair of all-new 5.0-liter V8s: one normally
aspirated in the XF Premium, the other supercharged in the new XFR. We'll
test an XFR soon, but today Inside Line is the first to take the new
non-supercharged 5.0-liter-powered 2010 Jaguar XF Premium to the test
track. Rated at 385 horsepower and 380
pound-feet of torque it's not quite as powerful as the former 4.2-liter
supercharged V8, but it's close.
To see just how close, we brought back a 2009 BMW 550i to see how the new
Jag stacks up when it's not getting help from a Supercharger. Given that the BMW is giving up 25
hp and 20 lb-ft of torque, we expected a close contest - and got one.
Euro-Clash: Mercedes E550 Sport vs. BMW 550i Sport vs. Jaguar XF Premium
2010 Mercedes-Benz E550 Sport vs. 2009 BMW 550i Sport vs. 2010 Jaguar XF
Premium @ INSIDELINE.COM:
Building an ideal executive-style luxury sedan is not an easy task for a
carmaker. If the car turns out too soft and isolated, you lose enthusiasts
who aren't quite ready to retire in a Lexus. Too complex or high-strung and
you risk alienating your technology-challenged, soft-in-the-middle buyers
who expect a measure of mindless comfort. Get the balance just right, and
your five-passenger $60,000 midsize sedan will both impress with remarkable
dynamics and indulge with palpable comfort.
We've gathered three such vehicles for this comparison: the 2009 BMW 550i,
2010 Jaguar XF Premium and 2010 Mercedes-Benz E550 Sport.
The 2009 BMW 550i is widely regarded as the benchmark among sporting luxury
sedans with its imposing modern design, 360-horsepower 4.8-liter V8 and
legendary sporting dynamics. For a car that's been around for five years,
its reputation remains consistently impressive.
All-new in '09, the Jaguar XF now is available in a midlevel model, and
this Jaguar XF Premium includes not only a new 385-hp direct-injection
5.0-liter V8 but also more standard features. Riding a 1st-place finish
from the last time we collected four similar cars in 2008, the Brit car
should be taken seriously.
The new-generation 2010 Mercedes-Benz E550 Sport stands a very good chance
of improving on its previous 3rd-place finish. Sure, the 382-hp 5.5-liter
V8 is a carryover item from the outgoing E-Class, yet Mercedes-Benz has
spent a considerable sum to refine this ninth-generation E-Class into a car
meant to define this segment of sedans.