2014 Jaguar XJR-L Review

For Passengers and Drivers

2014 Jaguar XJR-L Review

You’re rich. Some may even call you “filthy rich.” You are a self-made, dedicated individual who worked hard for every penny. You’ve earned your fortune, not inherited it. But life is not a bore; you like to play as hard as you work. You need a car that reflects this.


Engine: 5.0-liter supercharged V8 pumping out 550 hp and 502 lb-ft of torque.

Transmission: eight-speed automatic transmission sends power to the rear wheels.

Fuel economy: 15 mpg city, 23 mpg highway. Average as tested: 18.1 mpg.

Price: $119,895 to start, our lightly optioned test car costs $122,375.

Something like an executive limousine that thinks it’s a sports car. You want a vehicle that can be chauffeur driven during the week while you conduct important business in the back, but double as a weekend warrior attacking back-roads like Kowalski in “Vanishing Point.” This sounds like a job for the 2014 Jaguar XJR long wheelbase.

After a five-year hiatus, the “R” designation returns to the XJ lineup for 2014. Available with a short or long wheelbase, the R takes the already potent supercharged XJ Supercharged and transforms it into an English hooligan. More than just a badge and paint makeover, the R receives substantial upgrades inside and out. But it is the heart of this beast that makes us the most excited.

More Power Never Hurts

2014 Jaguar XJR LWB 14

Lurking under the vented bonnet is the 5.0-liter supercharged V8 from the Jaguar XKR-S pumping out 550 hp and 502 lb-ft of torque. That is an increase of 40 hp over last year’s XJ Supersport and an 80-hp increase over the XJ Supercharged. Like all XJs, this engine is hooked up to an eight-speed automatic transmission.  Unfortunately, the programming seems less responsive than we found with the eight-speed automatic in the F-Type. In regular drive mode, gear kick-down is delayed and goes through multiple cogs instead of finding the lowest possible option. That’s a suitable trait for a luxury limo, but not so for one with an “R” on the trunk lid and 550 hp. Sport mode improves the transmission’s haste a bit, but not by enough. The paddle shifters are unable to coax the transmission into responding quickly either.

Thankfully the engine picks up the slack. There is so much power on tap, the car will accelerate at any speed with ferocious velocity. It’s like driving an ocean freighter with a rocket booster. Jaguar claims the car can go from 0-60 mph in just 4.4 seconds on its way to a 174 mph top speed. It is impossible to exploit the speed of this car has within legal limits; it’s so fast and composed on the road, the XJR makes all speed limits seem painfully slow.

Lighter than the Competition

2014 Jaguar XJR LWB 05

The secret to the rear-wheel drive XJR’s speed is a lightweight body. At only 4,153 lbs., it is substantially lighter than the BMW 7 Series, Mercedes-Benz S-Class and Audi A8 L. A downside to lighter weight and high levels of power is traction; or a lack thereof. With near freezing temperatures and 295 mm wide high performance summer tires, putting power to the ground was a constant battle. Too much pressure from the accelerator and the tires vaporize. Corner with even a hint of aggression and the car will slide.

2014 Jaguar XJR LWB 06Although it may weigh less than its rivals, the car still tips the scales in excess of two tons and with an overall length of 206.8 inches, the XJ is longer than a Lord of the Rings movie; not exactly the specifications sports car dreams are made of. Despite this, the big Jaguar is highly capable in a set of switchbacks and grips the road with surprising vigor,  behaving more like a mid-size sports sedan than an especially long executive shuttle.

Flash and Elegance Inside

2014 Jaguar XJR LWB 10

But this does not mean the car is a rebellious delinquent; everything is prim and proper inside with only a subdued Jaguar V8 bark alluding to the car’s true potential. Well OK, the optional bright red leather seats may not please the opera and lawn bowling crowd but we love them. Not only do they look great, but the seats are also very comfortable thanks to 18 modes of adjustability.

Perfect for our cold wintery test period, rumps will roast in no time at all thanks to one of the most intense seat heaters we have ever experienced. The Meridian sound system is equally intense, gaining praise from drivers and passengers alike as it pounds out a clean, deep sound; everything from Bob Dylan to Bach sounds better in the XJR.

Rear Seat Lounge

2014 Jaguar XJR LWB 12

Warm and entertained, rear seat passengers will also be able stretch out. The extended wheelbase XJ gains nearly five inches of total length, all of which translates to extra rear legroom. Now measuring a massive 44.1 inches, that is more rear space than can be found in the Audi A8L W12, Mercedes-Benz S 63 AMG or BMW 760Li.

2014 Jaguar XJR LWB 03However, the XJ is saddled with a relatively cramped 37.2 inches of rear headroom, which is less than all three German rivals. This forces taller rear seat occupants to sprawl out when sitting in the back The trunk is also on the small side at only 15.2 cubic feet; all the extra space gained from the stretched chassis clearly went into the back seats.

Of course, no “R” treatment would be complete without a few exterior tweaks here and there. A more aggressive front splitter, side sill and rear spoiler complete the aerodynamic upgrades while the hood receives the usual “R” branded vents on either side. With the blacked out wheels and black paint job, the XJR looks meaner than an eighth grade bully and handsome like Sean Connery in a Tuxedo.

The Verdict

2014 Jaguar XJR LWB 06

Of course this car is not cheap, starting at $119,895 our lightly optioned test car came in at $122,375. However, that is cheaper than many other high-powered executive limos like the Mercedes-Benz S-Class and BMW 7 Series. But, if history is any indication, expect the full-size Jaguar to continue to sell in smaller numbers than its German rivals. That could actually come as an added bonus to those who do purchase the XJR as aside from the looks, power, sound and luxury, the XJR will also have a certain aura of exclusivity.

« Back

AutoGuide.com’s Monthly Overlay Newsletter Signup – By subscribing to our email newsletter, Entrants are eligible to win one (1) Amazon.com Gift Card (value of $100.00 USD). One (1) winner will be chosen every month at random and contacted by VerticalScope Inc.’s staff. *Amazon.com is not a sponsor of this promotion. Except as required by law, Amazon.com Gift Cards ("GCs") cannot be transferred for value or redeemed for cash. GCs may be used only for purchases of eligible goods at Amazon.com or certain of its affiliated websites. For complete terms and conditions, see www.amazon.com/gc-legal. GCs are issued by ACI Gift Cards, Inc., a Washington corporation. All Amazon ®, ™ & © are IP of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. No expiration date or service fees.


2. PRIZE: One (1) Winner will be randomly selected every month to each receive: one (1) $100.00 Amazon.com Gift Card (the “Prize Supplier”). Total approximate retail value of all prizes is approximately $100.00 USD. Prizes are not transferable and no cash or prize substitution is allowed. Prize package is awarded "as is" with no warranty or guarantee, either express or implied.

3. ELIGIBILITY: From the time of entry through the final date of prize fulfillment, each contest entrant and selected entrant must be a permanent lawful citizen and resident residing in the 50 United States or the District of Columbia or in Canada, and be twenty one (21) years of age or older. VOID IN PUERTO RICO, THE U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS, IN ALL FOREIGN COUNTRIES OUTSIDE OF THE UNITED STATES, AND ALL OTHER U.S. TERRITORIES OR CANADA AND POSSESSIONS AND WHERE PROHIBITED OR RESTRICTED BY LAW. Employees, officers, directors, agents and representatives, of the Sponsor and the Prize Supplier and each of their respective parent companies, affiliates, subsidiaries, advertising and promotion agencies, promotion partners and any entity involved in the development, production, implementation, administration or fulfillment of this Sweepstakes, and the immediate family members (e.g., spouse, mother, father, sister, brother, uncle, aunt, nephew, niece, grandparent, in-law, daughter and son, regardless of where they live) and persons living in the same household (whether or not related) of such individuals are not eligible to participate or win. Only one selected entrant per household. All decisions of the Sponsor with respect to this sweepstakes are final. The Sponsor shall have the right at any time to require proof of identity and failure to provide such proof may result in disqualification from the Sweepstakes.

4. ENTER BY INTERNET: You may enter this sweepstakes via the Internet by logging onto AutoGuide.com and subscribing to our email newsletter via the pop-up overlay.

5. SELECTION OF WINNER: One (1) Entrant will be selected by random selection who have subscribed to our email newsletter. The winner may be announced publicly on AutoGuide.com and will be contacted by VerticalScope Inc.’s staff. The winner will be required to provide a mailing address (that is not a P.O. box) to receive the prize which will be shipped free of charge.

6. ODDS OF WINNING: Odds of winning a prize are determined by the total number of eligible entries received.

7. RESTRICTIONS: The prize package consists of one (1) Amazon.com Gift Card with an approximate value of $100.00 USD. If prize cannot be awarded due to circumstances beyond the control of the Sponsor or Prize Supplier, no substitute prize will be awarded due to the unique nature of the prize. Sponsor and Prize Supplier shall not be liable to the winner or any person claiming through winner for failure to supply the prize or any part thereof, by reason of any acts of God, any action(s), regulation(s), order(s) or request(s) by any governmental or quasi-governmental entity (whether or not the action(s), regulations(s), order(s) or request(s) prove(s) to be invalid), equipment failure, utility failure, internet failure, terrorist acts, threatened terrorist acts, air raid, blackout, act of public enemy, earthquake, war (declared or undeclared), fire, flood, epidemic, explosion, unusually severe weather, hurricane, embargo, labor dispute or strike (whether legal or illegal) labor or material shortage, transportation interruption of any kind, work slow-down, civil disturbance, insurrection, riot, or any other cause beyond Sponsor's or Prize Supplier's control (collectively, "Force Majeure Event"). Sponsor shall not be responsible for any cancellations, delays, diversions or substitutions or any act or omissions whatsoever by the performers/events, other transportation companies or any other persons providing any of these services and accommodations to passengers including any results thereof such as changes in services or accommodations necessitated by same.

8. CONDITIONS: By entering the Sweepstakes, entrants agree to be bound by the Official Rules, Terms and Conditions and that Sponsor has the irrevocable right to use in perpetuity entrants' names, user names, likenesses, photographs, voices, home mailing address, biographical and prize information, and entry materials, without notice to entrants and without compensation or obligation, in any and all media now or hereafter known throughout the world, in any manner whatsoever, to advertise and promote Sponsor, its products and services, the Sweepstakes, and for any other purpose except where prohibited by law. Entrant waives the right to assert as a cost of winning a prize any and all costs of verification and redemption or travel to redeem said prize and any liability which might arise from redeeming or seeking to redeem said prize. Sponsor is not responsible for fraudulent calls or emails made to entrants not by the Sponsor. If the Sweepstakes is not capable of running as planned by reason of damage by computer viruses, worms or bugs, tampering, unauthorized intervention, fraud, technical limitations or failures, any Force Majeure Event or any other cause which, in the sole opinion of Sponsor, could corrupt, compromise, undermine or otherwise affect the administration, security, fairness, integrity, viability or proper conduct of the Sweepstakes, Sponsor reserves the right, in its sole and absolute discretion, to cancel, terminate, modify or suspend all or any part of the Sweepstakes, and to select a winner from among all eligible entries received by Sponsor up until the time of such cancellation, termination, modification or suspension, as applicable. Sponsor reserves the right in its sole discretion to disqualify any individual that (i) tampers or attempts to tamper with the entry process or the operations of this Sweepstakes in any manner, (ii) violates the Official Rules, Terms and Conditions or (iii) acts in an unsportsmanlike or disruptive manner, or with intent to annoy, abuse, threaten or harass any other person. CAUTION: ANY ATTEMPT BY AN ENTRANT OR ANY OTHER INDIVIDUAL TO DELIBERATELY DAMAGE OR UNDERMINE THE LEGITIMATE OPERATION OF THIS SWEEPSTAKES IS A VIOLATION OF CRIMINAL AND CIVIL LAWS. SHOULD SUCH AN ATTEMPT BE MADE, SPONSOR RESERVES THE RIGHT TO SEEK CIVIL AND/OR CRIMINAL PROSECUTION AND/OR DAMAGES FROM ANY SUCH PERSON TO THE FULLEST EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW. Any expenses and receipt and use of the prize and federal, state and local taxes and fees applicable in connection with the prize awarded are the sole responsibility of the winner. An IRS Form 1099 will be issued in the name of the winner for the actual value of the prize received. This Sweepstakes is subject to all federal, state and local laws of the United States. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED. Sponsor, Prize Supplier, and their respective officers, directors, parent companies, affiliates, subsidiaries and advertising and promotion agencies, employees, representatives and agents are not responsible for and shall not be liable for (i) any injuries, losses or damages of any kind caused by a prize resulting from acceptance, possession or usage of the prize, or (ii) printing, distribution or production errors. Sponsor or its affiliates may rescind any promotion found to contain such errors without liability at its or their sole discretion.

9. SPONSOR: The Sponsor of this contest is VerticalScope Inc. (the owner and operator of AutoGuide.com), 111 Peter Street, Suite 700, Toronto, Ontario, M5V 2H1.

Subscribe to our email newsletter and automatically be entered to win.
*Restrictions apply. See offer for details

Get Breaking Automotive News, Reviews and Video in your Facebook Feed!

Already Liked