2016 Jaguar XF is Light on Weight, Heavy on Tech

Amid a rapid brand rejuvenation one Jaguar has grown stale. But that ends now.

The current XF, Jag’s rival for the likes of the BMW 5 Series and Mercedes E-Class, is truly from a different era. Introduced back in 2007, Rhianna’s “Umbrella” was topping the charts and and the world was blissfully ignorant of the impending global economic meltdown.

Moving into the modern era the second generation XF is based on an aluminum intensive architecture and weighs as much as 265 lbs less than the previous model. Size wise it’s 0.3 inches shorter in length though the wheelbase has been stretched by 2-inches, with a 2.6-inch shorter front overhang, an extra half-inch of rear legroom and an added inch of headroom despite having a roofline that’s almost an inch lower.

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It’s artistically similar though is made of 83 percent new parts. Style elements worth highlighting include the more pronounced front end openings, the J-shaped LED bars in the headlights and the illuminated taillight design borrowed from the F-Type.

SEE ALSO: Jaguar F-Type SVR Spy Photos

One engine option is available, a supercharged 3.0-liter V6, though with two different states of tune: 340 hp and 380 hp. Jaguar boasts the more powerful version, when equipped with the optional all-wheel drive system, can hit 60 mph in just 5.0 seconds, though the standard car can still do it in 5.2. And knowing Jaguar they’re both certain to sound spectacular.

The all-wheel drive system defaults to rear-drive but can send power to the front when required. Using a variable clutch power is allocated front to rear by monitoring vehicle sensors to determine the yaw rate, speed and steering angle. In addition a new Adaptive Surface Response system will determine what type of road the car is on, be it wet, gravel, snow, ice or normal, and adjust the car’s responses to match.

For added control Jag has now also equipped the car with brake torque vectoring, which slows the inside wheel in a corner to reduce understeer and help the car turn. Borrowed from the F-Type is Jag’s configurable Dynamics System that lets the driver adjust the throttle sensitivity, transmission massing, steering feel and adaptive suspension using the touch screen.

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Inside there are familiar elements like the control knob gear selector, but the real highlights are the available 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and 10.2-inch touchscreen.

Debuting Jag’s new InControl Touch user interface, the standard unit has an 8-inch screen while the larger unit comes with a more advanced version that lets users create their own custom home page with shortcuts for their preferred apps. It also comes with a 17-speaker 825 watt Meridian audio system.

The navigation system is particularly impressive. It can send updates to your contacts to let them know when you’ll arrive at your destination using real time traffic data. It monitors your routes and will automatically suggest alternatives if it detects traffic on your normal roads. And it will even ask you if you require parking once you approach your set destination.

And there’s so much more, like an an app that lets you set the temperature, check fuel levels, and unlock the doors from your phone, an Intelligent Speed Limiter that will warn you of approaching decreases or increases in the speed limit, plus All-Surface Progress Control that takes traction control to a new level, delivering the perfect amount of torque to move the XF out of any slippery situation..

The 2016 XF will go on sale this Winter and that’s just the start. Jaguar has already promised a diesel option for those looking for superior fuel economy, and you can bet a supercharged 5.0-liter V8 is somewhere down the line as well.