2014 Jaguar XFR-S
By G.R. Whale
On Sale: Summer 2013
Expected Pricing: $100,000-$107,000
A new Jaguar XFR-S goes on sale this summer. The 2014 Jaguar XFR-S sedan is a serious piece of machinery aimed squarely at BMW's M5, Mercedes's E63 AMG, Cadillac's CTS-V and Audi's S6. Only 99 of them are headed to the U.S.
The mid-size, rear-drive sports sedan gets a performance makeover in the vein of the XKR-S sports car and the same engine. The 5-liter supercharged V8 is tuned up to 550 horsepower at 6500 rpm and 502 lb-ft of torque from 2500 rpm, enough to reach 60 from rest in 4.4 seconds (typically a traction issue in this class) and on to an electronically-limited 186 mph.
Revealed at the November 2012 LA Auto Show, the 2014 XFR-S will be equipped with an 8-speed automatic transmission. It will come equipped with an automatic engine Start/Stop feature and it avoids the federal Gas Guzzler tax with EPA ratings of 15/23 City/Highway mpg. However, we the crackling, rumbling exhaust will encourage behavior resulting in somewhat lower mileage. If fuel economy is what you're after, the XF is also available with a turbocharged four-cylinder and a supercharged V6.
Suspension rates and roll stiffness of the XFR-S both increase by 30 percent over the standard XF, while adjustable dampers keep the high-performance model civilized when comfort and quiet are more important than outright cornering and transition speeds. Forged 20-inch alloy wheels hold grippy 265/35 and 295/30 Pirellis, better able to cope with the power through an electronically controlled differential and braking forces summoned by 15-inch discs.
XFR-S will be easily distinguished from garden XFs, especially with the higher-profile rear wing with carbon-fiber center section. Other aerodynamic changes aimed at high-speed stability and cooling the running gear include a deep front spoiler with bigger intakes, carbon fiber splitter and gloss-black mesh grille, wider side sills and aero blades behind the front wheels, and a deep diffuser under the back. Of the five colors offered two have Racing in the name and only one, Stratus Grey, is remotely close to subtle.
Inside the charcoal leather seat bolsters are woven to mimic carbon fiber, and piped and stitched in contrasting red, white or blue. Trim is aluminum and piano black, with the occasional R logo added, and an 825-watt, 18-speaker Meridian sound system is among the standard amenities. Options are limited to the carbon-fiber rear wing, carbon fiber engine cover, electrically heated windshield and carbon fiber cabin trim to replace the piano black.