Photos & Story: Evan ‘Evo’ Yates
Luxury sedans typically adhere to a particular calculated formula. Automotive companies are well aware if they want to achieve their sales goals they ought to stick to gadget-heavy, ultra- quiet vessels that smoothly and uneventfully transports its occupants to and from their destinations. This initiative is understandable as its assumed most consumers in the six-figure luxury sedan market yearn for the peace and tranquility that a vehicle like a Lexus LS460 delivers. On the contrary, the 2014 Jaguar XJR does not deliver peace and tranquility and your daily journeys will be far from uneventful – and that’s what I love about it. The XJR is the black swan of the 100k segment and is damn proud of it.
From the moment you lay your eyes on the black beast its brash attitude is immediately apparent. Further enhancing its brazenfaced stature, our particular test vehicle was monochromatic black with gunmetal wheels and a bright red interior. There is no denying that this ride means business. Hopping into the driver seat you instantly feel like a bad ass – which is usually the furthest thing from your mind when in a luxury vehicle. I felt as if I needed aviator shades, black leather driving gloves and a five o’clock shadow on my face. Pressing the start button makes the dash cluster come alive and the circular gear selector erects from the center console, ergonomically correct as it’s exactly where my hand wanted to lay naturally. The gauge cluster is completely digital which although some think is too new school, I think is brilliant as it adds to the overall ambiance. In addition to the perforated red leather, the headliner and pillars are black suede and being a huge fan of custom cars, this aesthetic excites me because if I didn’t know any better, I would’ve assumed a high-end shop like MC Customs re-upholstered the interior for some millionaire MLB player. Ultimately this interior makes you want to post selfies on Instagram (I didn’t) just so everyone can see how dope you are in this vehicle. The only downfall of the interior is the media control center that just seems a little behind the times in regards to integration. I could go into depth about additional gadget-based shortfalls but honestly, with a car this amazing you simply don’t notice.
And as any genuine car guy will tell you, a ride can look the part all it wants but if it can’t back up its ferocious façade, it ain’t legit. Thankfully, the XJR passed that test with flying colors. The XJR literally excited, frightened, and surprised me all in one pedal push. The 550 horsepower supercharged 5.0 V8 immediately pins you to your seat as the traction controls tries to keep the car in a straight line. It’s wonderful. The power is instantaneous and as soon all four tires are planted firmly the XJR never runs out of power. And as visceral as the driving experience can be, the XJR is a very effective daily driver. The Jag’s performance-based suspension is noticeable but never feels rough – you just feel planted. With a smooth eight-speed transmission and super-stout brakes, your driving experience is well-rounded. Ultimately, the 2014 Jaguar XJR is the Dark Knight in a segment filled with cookie-cutter clones and that’s what makes it most appealing. If you have the cash this beast is a no-brainer.
Power: 550hp, 553 lb.-ft.
0-60: 3.6 secs.
Gas Cash: 15 City, 23 Hwy
Miles Driven: 550