2020 Jaguar XE review: Thinking outside the box

If somebody needs a compact luxury motor vehicle, the names that crop up most often are just the kinds you’re imagining of: Audi, BMW, Mercedes. But Germany is not exceptional in its potential to manufacture a motor vehicle in this phase. There are selections exterior the norm, like the 2020 Jaguar XE. Sure, you may not have the actual identical object of aspiration that your neighbors also have on their driveway, but iconoclasm has its gains.


  • Drives good
  • Looks sharp
  • Sufficient standard protection units

Do not Like

  • Lags guiding levels of competition in output
  • So-so transmission
  • Choices get high priced

Hit the highway, Jag

Even however these compact luxury cars and trucks are frequently very very good at anything, automakers can nevertheless choose to highlight essential characteristics. Jaguar requires a webpage from the identical ebook as BMW when it comes to the 2020 XE, due to the fact its driving dynamics are placed front and center, and to very good impact. The XE’s experience good quality is on the stiff side the to start with pothole or enlargement joint will enable you know that coddling is not in the car’s dictionary, some of which is probably thanks to the Pirelli Sottozero wintertime tires wrapped about bigger (albeit optional) twenty-inch wheels. Some sidewall would go a extensive way listed here, so possibly sticking with the stock 19s is a very good plan.

My tester’s optional adaptive dampers do not deliver for the smoothest experience in the phase, but chuck this 4-door into a corner and the suspension will maintain things good and flat. The experience isn’t really harsh, it can be just communicative, and it does settle into a smoother groove on extensive, flat stretches of expressway. Merge that with direct, properly weighted steering and you have acquired the makings of a correctly pleasurable sedan. 

My tester rocks the XE’s most powerful engine, a 2.-liter turbocharged I4 generating 296 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. The 4-pot’s be aware isn’t really my favourite, but it can be much greater than the tractor-engine seem profile Volvo’s S60 is functioning with. That torque arrives good and early in the revs, which would make receiving up to pace easy and pleasurable. Difficulties is, the XE P300 (as styles with this engine are termed) is the most powerful XE that Jaguar would make, but its price tag places it towards cars like the BMW M340i, Mercedes-AMG C43 and Audi S4, all of which have outputs among 349 and 385 hp. Which is an awfully substantial gulf for cars and trucks that commence about the identical price tag. Let’s hope Jaguar has one thing perkier in the works, like a further XE S.

Each individual XE comes with the identical transmission: an eight-pace automatic. When it upshifts immediately in Sport mode, the gearbox does not have the sharpness that I have skilled from competitors’ transmissions. You can find also the situation of the guide shifting option, where by the response is gradual, generating for a considerably less engaging encounter than I’d like, specifically when Jaguar highlights the car’s dynamics so effectively in other methods.

An additional sticking point for me is the brakes. When the $1,315 Dynamic Managing Pack enhance consists of pink brake calipers, the stoppers on their own are the identical sizing throughout the lineup. The brakes have no difficulties bringing the motor vehicle to a halt in a hurry, but person, that pedal is 1 grabby son of a gun. Clean stops are a small challenging.

Obtaining a lower output than the levels of competition indicates owning a small much more thrift. The EPA prices the Jaguar XE P300 at 22 miles per gallon city and 30 mpg freeway. Which is a few ticks in advance of both of those the Mercedes-AMG C43 and Audi S4, and it can be tied with the BMW M340i.

Cat go well with

I was not seriously offered on the pre-refresh Jaguar XE — I feel it can be due to the fact the substantial taillights quickly gave the motor vehicle an aged search, when everybody else was going slimmer. Both way, my qualms have been ironed out for the 2020 model year thanks to a visible redo that slims the lights, widens the grille and tweaks the bumpers. Jaguar’s sedans search very sharp now, which would make it an even even larger bummer that they usually are not as ubiquitous as the BMW 3 Collection or Mercedes-Benz C-Course. The XE may absence the visible punch of one thing like the Alfa Romeo Giulia, but it can be nevertheless a looker.

Inside of, Jaguar placed an enhanced aim on resources, and it exhibits. Of study course, my tester is also an exception, carrying the $2,one hundred fifty Windsor Leather-based option that addresses the seats in some correctly buttery conceal. But in all places I touch is good, from the dashboard to even the carbon fiber trim (which isn’t really well worth $1,one hundred to me, however). Lovers of the electric I-Speed will be pleased to see its steering wheel listed here, complete with a established of proper steel shift paddles. The annoying previous rotary shift dial is gone, far too in its location is the much prettier and much much more usable shifter from the F-Variety.

I seriously dig the XE’s inside aesthetic. At the minimum, it feels much more top quality than the plastic-superb character of lower-specced three Collection.

Andrew Krok/Roadshow

The XE’s refresh also improved its storage situation. The door panels have broader pockets that are nevertheless a small on the shallow side, but the glove compartment is ample and the center armrest will keep whatever’s in your pockets. The small slot below the HVAC controls houses a wireless charger, and I like that it can be tucked absent where by you are unable to seriously see the display screen — protection to start with, people.

The 2nd row is a small tight for taller passengers. Headroom is at a top quality, and even though I was not scraping my six-foot frame towards the headliner, I was near. The legroom isn’t really just just about anything to generate dwelling about, both, with a little footwell and seatbacks that brush my knees. The middle seat’s seen hump isn’t really what I’d get in touch with relaxed to sit on, so try out to stick with two abreast in the back if you can. The XE’s trunk is also tight, with its 12.1-cubic-foot potential lagging guiding the BMW three Collection, Mercedes C-Course and Audi A4.

Flashy tech

Jaguar Land Rover’s in-motor vehicle tech has been hit-or-miss out on in the very last various years, with a lot of iterations erring towards a miss out on. Even so, things show up to be on the upswing now. The 2020 XE picks up JLR’s most up-to-date InControl infotainment system. It seems slicker and it responds more quickly than just before, reducing two sizable worries from earlier getups, but it nevertheless requires fairly a even though just before it can be completely ready to go each early morning, inserting treasured seconds among commencing the motor vehicle in the chilly and receiving individuals heated seats fired up.

My tester 1-ups the standard system with a $1,950 enhance that adds InControl Touch Pro Duo. When standard XEs have simple physical HVAC controls, this option replaces it with a further touchscreen and a pair of dials that also contain shows. It seems flashy as hell, and it can be easy to get made use of to, but people who crave serious buttons will be enable down. The package deal also adds wireless gadget charging and a 12.three-inch gauge exhibit which is good for highlighting pertinent information and facts with minimum distraction, no matter whether it can be a complete map or just standard automobile data like gas financial system.

Standard protection is the name of the activity in the automotive business these times, and Jaguar is generating guaranteed to maintain speed. The 2020 XE comes standard with automatic unexpected emergency braking, parking sensors and lane-keeping support. Throw down a further $1,seven hundred and you can add adaptive cruise handle and blind-location monitoring to the combine. My tester also consists of a rearview mirror that can demonstrate a feed from the backup digicam — it can be not the most recent tech on the block, nor is it the most beneficial in a little sedan not struggling from visibility concerns, but it can be nevertheless neat.

InControl lets you use login profiles to retail store and recall addresses, favorites or contacts.

Andrew Krok/Roadshow

How I’d spec it

The Jaguar XE begins out inexpensive at $forty six,295, but my tester has pretty much just about every option possible, sending its price tag to a close to-ludicrous $sixty three,375.

I am going to help you save some cash ideal off the bat by sticking with a totally free paint coloration and the stock 19-inch wheels, which should boost the experience good quality a smidge. The Black Exterior pack gets rid of the exterior chrome for $375 and is a must-have in my ebook. The $2,one hundred fifty Windsor Leather-based option feels well worth it, specifically since it also consists of 16-way seats with warmth and air flow. $250 adds warmth to the steering wheel, and the $800 Meridian encompass-seem system presents a good deal of aural bang for your buck. Throw in the aforementioned $1,950 Touch Pro Duo enhance and $1,365 for the linked-navigation package deal that adds visitors-signal recognition that works with the adaptive cruise handle, and which is about where by I’d end. That places my out-the-door price tag at $fifty four,a hundred and eighty together with destination, which is substantially much more palatable.

Down to brass tacks

You can find a total good deal of appealing steel in this phase. The XE P300 may absence the punch of the Audi S4, BMW M340i or Mercedes-AMG C43, but its gas financial system is greater than most of ’em. But only the Audi S4 can match the XE P300’s foundation price tag — the Bimmer and Merc involve pretty much $10,000 much more to get begun. The BMW is almost certainly the very best point of comparison from a driver’s perspective, even though the Mercedes errs much more towards luxury. Oh, and the C43’s experience is completely terrible — which is well worth mentioning, far too.

Even however Jaguar sedans are receiving harder to locate on the highway with just about every passing day, I nevertheless feel the XE is completely well worth your time. It seems and fits like a effectively-personalized go well with, it can be correctly pleasurable to generate and even the tech is very outstanding. Split down the partitions of custom and try out one thing new for after.