This is the home of automobile road tests in South Africa. We drive South African cars, SUVs and LCVs under South African conditions. It also just happens that most of the vehicles we drive are world cars as well, so what you read here probably applies to the models you can get at home.
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New faces and engines
Published in Weekend Witness Motoring on Saturday 27th June 2009
Pics by author
“We make beautiful, fast cars,” said Jaguar SA Sales and Marketing Manager Tania Cleary, addressing invited guests at the KZN reveal of the revamped XK and XF ranges at Jaguar Umhlanga last week.
If possible, these updates of the first new models from the young, talented and committed design and engineering teams at Jaguar look even more gorgeous than when they first took to the streets just a few years ago. The beauty is not just skin deep – all but one of the motors have been reengineered as well.
The only one carried over from before is the entry-level 3.0 litre V6 petrol unit for XF models. The previously-2.7 litre V6 diesel has grown to 3.0 litres and is available in lightly-blown 177 kW/500 Nm form, or as a 202 kW/600 Nm stormer that propels the XF to 100 km/h in a claimed 5.4 seconds. The 177 kW version does the same job in 7.1. Top speeds are governed to 250 – and 240 km/h respectively.
“The parallel sequential turbocharger system on our new V6 diesels delivers V8 levels of performance from very low revs. The engines can deliver 500Nm torque from standstill in just 500 milliseconds, which is a remarkable achievement. It’s a power unit that delivers superb flexibility and remarkably low fuel consumption and emissions, while building on the refinement that has become a trademark of our Jaguar diesel engines,” says Group Chief Engineer, Powertrain, Ron Lee.
As indicated above, the engines may be bigger and more powerful, but fuel consumption and CO2 emissions have been reduced by 10%, exceeding 2011 EU5 regulations comfortably.
Equally impressive are the new 5.0 litre V8 petrol engines. The naturally aspirated version develops 283 kW at 6 500 rpm and 515 Nm at 3 500 rpm, while in supercharged form, the figures are 375 kW between 6 000 and 6 500 rpm and 625 Nm between 2 500 and 5 500 rpm - good for zero to 100 km/h times of 5.7 and 4.9 seconds respectively.
Possibly more relevant is the supercharged car’s ability to roll on from 80 to 110 km/h in just 1.9 seconds. Fuel economy and emissions are between 1% and 2% better than those on the 4.2 litre units they replace.
To illustrate theoretical performance levels, guests were treated to a movie clip showing what the V8 supercharged XF could do, were US Federally-regulated governors removed. With very minor body modifications, the unchained XF dashed through the traps at the Bonneville Salt Flats at 224.5 mph, or approximately 364 km/h.
All versions use the ZF 6HP28 6-speed electronically controlled gearbox, beefed-up on supercharged versions with additional clutch plates and uprated torque converter.
XK coupès and convertibles are fitted with the two V8s only, and come in Luxury and R trim levels respectively. An ultra-luxuriously appointed Portfolio edition of the naturally aspirated cars is available to special order. XF models are available with all five power plants, with trim levels dependent upon engine choice.
XF models range in price from R565 000 for the 3.0 litre petrol Luxury version to R955 000 for the 5.0 litre supercharged XFR. The Luxury-level 5.0 litre V8 coupè version of the XK is priced at R990 000, while the range-topping XKR convertible will set you back R1 250 000. All models come with a 3 year/100 000km warranty and 5 year/100 000 km maintenance plan.
2010 Jaguar XKR coupe
2010 Jaguar XF
What We Do
This is a one-man show, which means that road test cars entrusted to me are driven only by me. Some reviewers hand test cars over to their partners to use as day-to-day transport and barely experience them for themselves.
What this means to you is that every car reviewed is given my own personal evaluation and receives my own seat of the pants judgement - no second hand input here.
Every car goes through real world testing; on city streets littered with potholes, speed bumps and rumble strips, on freeways and if its profile demands, dirt roads as well.
I am based in Pietermaritzburg, KZN, South Africa. This is the central hub of the KZN Midlands farming community; the place farmers go to to buy their supplies and equipment, truck their goods to market, send their kids to school and go to kick back and relax.
So occasionally a cow, a goat or a horse may add a little local colour by finding its way into the story or one of the pictures. It's all part of the ambience!
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