2017 Jaguar XE
The last Jaguar compact sports sedan we tested was the X-type. Don’t remember it? Well, that’s probably a good thing, as that Ford Contour based front-driver never made a serious impact here, or anywhere else for that matter. Just too much a parts bin car. Now, Jag is stepping back into that segment, and stepping up, with what may be a much more impactful car. This is the XE.
After first hitting European streets a year ago, the 2017 Jaguar XE sedan now makes its way to America’s potholes, looking to catch a ride on Jaguar’s recent Big Kahuna size wave of sales success.
And, awaiting you inside this compact sport 4-door, is the familiar Jaguar theme of late, along with plenty of the accustomed switchgear.
And that’s great. But, the drab and unappealing space it fits into is not. Much of the dash real estate goes unused. There is nothing for the passenger to look at except lots of pebbled plastic and a big airbag logo.
The XE really needs some extra trim to brighten up the space, and reinforce its upscale kinship to other Jaguars, and frankly, look competitive to other rear-drive European sport-luxury sedans.
Now that that’s out of the way, we’ll get to what we love about the XE; and there’s plenty of it. Starting with what’s under the hood.
Here, its Jaguar’s lovely 3.0-liter supercharged V6; boasting 340-horsepower and 332 lb-ft. of torque. A 2.0-liter diesel is also available. Both are equipped with an 8-speed automatic transmission, and you can get all-wheel-drive with both.
A rear-drive only, gasoline-fed 2.0-liter I4 model is offered as well.
At the track, our rear drive V6 did do some battle with wheel spin at launch, but then got off to a very nice 4.9-second 0-60. Power never deviates, with enough midrange torque for days; or at least for a 13.5–second 1/4-mile at 105 miles-per-hour. Lovely!
Automatic shifts are quick and seamless; all accompanied by a subtle exhaust note reminiscent of, but nowhere near as fierce as, the F-type.
It was easy to keep the speed up through our handling course. If we didn’t already know that steering was electric, we’d have a hard time guessing; very responsive, if down on true road feel.
Dynamic mode tightens and quickens everything up, helping to improve feel; though we found throttle response now touchy, and it was easy to initiate too much oversteer.
A 112-foot average stopping distance from 60, is quite good; as was pedal feel and overall stability.
On public roads, near posted speeds, the XE drives wonderfully. It’s a highly capable back road blaster, with a tremendously smooth and placid nature.
The ZF-sourced 8-speed transmission is well-sorted, and also well-matched to this V6; we only experienced some occasion jerkiness in stop-and-go traffic.
With every setting at its sportiest, the XE does a decent 3-series impression, but it feels more at home kept in softer settings.
Compared to rivals such as the 3-Series, C-Class, A4, and ATS; the XE is far more gorgeous to look at.
The proportions look just right, there are enough creases and angles to keep it interesting, and the coupe-like, thick C-pillar profile is certainly consistent with the segment. So, any compromise to rear visibility is a concession we can live with.
Like most recent Jag’s, there are plenty of stylish details that remind us of the now haloed F-type.
Plenty of tech features are available too, and you can activate the rear camera almost any time; which we feel is a better solution than Cadillac’s rearview mirror cam.
And while some may think we were a bit harsh in our earlier description of the XE’s overall interior environment; we have only praise for Jag’s latest InControl touch system that manages it. It’s logical, and responds quickly to your inputs. A huge step up!
A host of advanced safety systems are available for ’17, including autonomous braking; but our tester wasn’t so-equipped.
Government Fuel Economy Ratings for a V6 rear driver are 21-City, 30-Highway, and 24-Combined. Our average was a better than expected 25.8 mile-per Premium gallon. That’s an Energy Impact Score of 13.7-barrels of annual oil consumption with CO2 emissions of 6.1-tons.
XE pricing starts very reasonably at $35,895 for a turbo-4 25t; and the V6 35t is not out of line either, at $42,695; with the diesel falling in between the two.
The 2017 Jaguar XE continues the brand’s streak of all-around performance winners. Plus, on the outside, it’s very easy on the eyes. But, it’s going up against a sea of excellent alternatives with a lackluster interior that is no help. Still, and very much unlike the X-type before it, there’s a lot to like and admire about the XE, and it clearly deserves to be part of any luxo-sport sedan conversation.
- Engine: 3.0 liter
- Horsepower: 340
- Torque: 332 lb-ft.
- 0-60 mph: 4.9 seconds
- 1/4 mile: 13.5 seconds @ 105 mph
- EPA: 21 mpg city / 30 mpg highway
- Energy Impact: 13.7 barrels of oil/yr
- CO2 Emissions: 6.1 tons/yr
2023 BMW X7
Should Keep The BMW Faithful Coming Back For More
While BMW got serious about their SUV game around the same time as most other luxury brands, it took them until just a few years ago to deliver a 3-row example. This year, that X7 is updated with new style and new tech. So, let’s see if that makes it the ultimate premium 3-row family machine.
When it comes to utility vehicles, bigger seems to be better for a lot of people. So, for BMW, there’s none bigger or better than the X7 3-row utility, which for 2023 gets a comprehensive update after just 4-years on the market. That includes a facelift to bring it more in line with the new 7-series carline, which is to say joins the more vertical, aggressive grille party. Also, the actual headlights have been moved lower in the front fascia, with squinty DRLs above for the first time on a BMW. In back, taillights take on a 3D posture, with a new chrome bar connecting them.
There are also multiple new M Sport packages to choose from to spice up the exterior, with larger air intakes up front, high-gloss black trim, upgraded exhaust, cascade grille lighting, and 22-inch wheels, as well as M Sport brakes…
…and the interior too, with aluminum trim and exclusive steering wheel. But, by far the biggest change inside for ‘23 is a new dashtop curved display that eliminates the typical BMW well-hooded gauge pod and blends 12-inch Live Cockpit Pro into the 15-inch infotainment touchscreen, which now features iDrive8. Both a Head-Up Display and a large panoramic sunroof are standard.
Whether set up for 2 or 3 passengers, 2nd row seat room remains plentiful, and though the X7 doesn’t look ungainly large like many of its competitors, access to the 3rd row is quite good. Cargo space is reached through a fairly unique, Range Rover-style, split tailgate, which is quite oddly satisfying to watch unfold. There’s room for 48.6 cubic-ft. of goods behind the 2nd row, with a max of 90.4 cu.-ft.
The base xDrive40i has always been the sensible choice, even more so now with a new inline-6 turbo getting a significant bump in horsepower from 335 to 375, and a 48-volt mild-hybrid system that results in a total of 398 lb-ft. of torque.
At our Mason Dixon test track, there was enough to blast this big beast to 60 in just 5.4-seconds. That’s only about half a second slower than the V8 did the deed back in 2019. Making that optional 523-horsepower V8 simply overkill at this point. Our best ¼-mile pass was 13.9-seconds at 100 miles-per-hour. All X7s get a quick shifting sport-tuned 8-speed automatic transmission, which adds a new Sprint Function that finds the lowest usable gear instantly and maxes electric boost with a hold of the left shift paddle. What fun!
New looks and updated tech are cool, but BMW has also addressed dynamics as well, with a retuning of all chassis systems, including the optional Dynamic Handling Package which adds adaptive suspension with roll stabilization and uses GPS and camera data to prepare for what’s coming. We’re not sure if our slalom course was anticipated, but the X7 sure felt well-equipped to handle it. All-wheel drive is standard on all X7s, along with comprehensive drive modes.
In our braking runs, the pads bit down hard quickly, stopping us from 60 in just 115-feet with very little nosedive.
Government Fuel Economy Ratings for the 6-cylinder are 21-City, 25-Highway, and 22-Combined. We averaged just 21.0 miles-per-gallon on Premium.
There’s an average Energy Impact Score; 13.5-barrels of oil yearly, with CO2 emissions of 6.5-tons.
Pricing starts at $78,845, and it’s a significant step up from there to $104,095 if you want the V8. Even more reason to stick with the 6-cylinder as far as we’re concerned.
It took the ultimate driving machine folks quite a bit of time to enter the 3-row family crossover segment, but when they did, they were able to create their largest utility ever and keep it consistent with their values. For 2023, the BMW X7 gets even more dynamic, embraces new tech, and looks better too. All things that should keep the BMW faithful coming back for more.
- Engine: I-6
- Horsepower: 375
- 0-60 mph: 5.4 seconds
- 60-0 Braking: 115 feet (avg)
- MW Fuel Economy: 21.0 MPG
- Transmission: 8-speed automatic
- Torque: 398 lb-ft.
- 1/4 Mile: 13.9-seconds at 100 mph
- EPA: 21 City / 25 Highway / 22 Combined