The Grand Tour

The Jaguar XE Takes The Crown Away From The BMW M3

So I should start this car review with a “full disclosure” statement as this will arguably be one of the most biased car reviews in history… That said, right up front I will let you know that I loved the Jaguar XE so much, that I actually went out and purchased one! Now in my defense, I did do quite a bit of research before buying my car; and I do believe that I made the best possible choice given my life style, the cars available in the market place, and of course my budget. While this may be a completely biased car review, at least you know I am willing to put my money where my mouth is!

Jaguar XE via Motor Trend

In Motor Trend’s car show “Head 2 Head,” host Jonny Lieberman not only declared that the Jaguar XE S was the winner over the BMW 335i M Sport, but declared that the Jaguar XE, “… raises the bar. The new standard in that segment!” You can watch the clip about the 2015 BMW 335i M Sport vs. the 2016 Jaguar XE S from Motor Trend’s show Head 2 Head here:

I obviously agree with the analysis; the Jaguar XE is a dream to drive. Even after several months, I still love getting in this car and simply driving. I find myself often taking the longer route to where I am going, simply because I WANT to continue driving the car. Road and Track reviewed the car and said that the Jaguar XE had the “Suspension from the Gods.” I’ve driven numerous performance cars over the years; Mustangs, Camaros, BMW’s, Volvo’s, Porsches, and nearly every Japanese and Korean car ever made. Nothing even comes close to the ride in the Jaguar XE. You drive this car and you can’t help but wonder if a $250,000.00 super car could match the

BMW M3 via Car and Driver

In the Grand Tour Season 1 Episode 10 “Dumb Fight at the O.K. Coral” Scene 4 (around the 6:00 minute mark), we have James May and Richard Hammond arguing about which is better, the Jaguar XE S or the BMW M3. Unfortunately, we don’t get to see a film about this important matchup, because Jeremey Clarkson hijacked the clip in order to do his own clip about the 2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio. I have to admit some disappointment that the Grand Tour didn’t take the opportunity to do a three-way contest, with Jeremey in the Alfa Romeo, Richard in the BMW M3, and James May in the Jaguar XE S. Wouldn’t that matchup have been amazing?

So why does the driver get such an amazing feeling from this car? What kind of voodoo could Jaguar possibly be using in the chassis that it could actually outperform an M3? Well, unlike the BMW M3 series, the Jaguar XE does not use a MacPherson Strut, but instead uses double-control arm (double wishbone) technology with a multi-link suspension up front, with an upper control arm and an integral link suspension in the back. This unique suspension combination in conjunction with the amazing Ingenium engine, coupled to the incredible ZF 8HP45 eight-speed automatic transmission, makes the Jaguar XE the sports sedan of the decade! Plus, in my humble opinion, it’s the best looking car in its class thanks to the design work of the famous Ian Callum.

BMW M3 vs. Jaguar XE via Motor Trend

So how great is the chassis and suspension on the Jaguar XE? We know that a great chassis and suspension are critical to providing the support needed for a vehicle’s engine. The more powerful the engine, the more critical the chassis and suspension need to be in order to effectively handle the power and put it down on the road. So, when Jaguar decided to make the most powerful car in the history of the company, what chassis did it choose to use? Do I really need to tell you?

The chassis of the Jaguar XE is so good, that it was selected by Jaguar over all its other vehicles, including the coveted F-Type, when it decided to produce the most powerful Jaguar in the history of the company! Here is a great article written by friend and fellow staff writer here at the Grand Tour Nation, Alex

Most powerful Jaguar ever via Autoweek

Now that we know the Jaguar XE is a great car to drive, let’s talk about the big elephant in the room: maintenance. To be honest, Jaguar doesn’t exactly have the best reputation when it comes to vehicle reliability. However, the Jaguar Land Rover company thinks that is about to change. Not only has the company built a brand new £500 Million factory in Wolverhampton in Staffordshire to build the amazing Ingenium engine, but it has also built a brand new £2 Billion state of the art factory in Solihull, England, to assemble the new Jaguar XE and Range Rover Sport!

In other words, Jaguar has a brand new car designed by the famous Ian Callum, with one of the most advanced engines ever designed built in a brand new dedicated engine factory, and the whole thing assembled in a brand spanking new state of the art facility… No wonder Jaguar thinks its maintenance woes are behind them. And they are willing to back it up with 5 years of free maintenance when you lease or purchase one of their cars! It seems that Jaguar is willing to put its money where its mouth is, too!

Matt Leblanc’s Ford Focus RS

Now before you criticize me and think that I have just opened my wallet and bought my way into a great car, there are a few things you should know. I did a lot of research and looked into many different cars, from mid-range Japanese and Korean models, to Ford, BMW, Mercedes and Volvo. In the end, the lease options from Jaguar were just too good to resist. I put less money down and only ended up paying $20 more a month than I had been paying for my leased Hyundai Tucson! But the real kicker is that not only did I get free maintenance (which the Hyundai did not have), but my insurance bill went down $500 a year! You heard me right, I am leasing a Jaguar XE for less out of pocket costs per year than I was when I was driving a Hyundai Tucson!

Now that you have heard my well-reasoned and rational car review (and completely biased of course), can I tell you why I really bought a Jaguar XE? I could have gotten the amazing Ford Focus RS from the same dealership Matt LeBlanc purchased his from. But, I’d be driving a Ford Focus, and I would have to constantly explain to my friends, “No really, the Ford Focus RS is an amazing car to drive, you got to try it!”

Jeremy Clarkson smug face

Instead when I’m asked what car I drive, using my best Jeremey Clarkson, “winning while not looking smug face,” I casually say, “I drive a Jag!”

Keep driving my friends! My thanks to Larry for helping me with this article.

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