behold the 2018 jaguar xf sportbrake, a wagon version of jag's mid-size sedan. other luxury brands like audi and bmw have been running for the exits in recent years as they've dropped wagons from their lineups. and that got us thinking: what is this car doing in america, right now, of all times? does it offer something different that those now-gone luxury models didn't, that might get shoppers to reconsider one of these over an suv? let's find out.
if you hang around car enthusiasts long enough, you soon learn that many have an affinity for wagons. preferably with a manual transmission. and a diesel used engine . or, in other words, the automotive equivalent of a needle in a haystack.
the xf sportbrake doesn't offer a diesel used engine , but it does have something for the enthusiast driver: a supercharged v-6 used engine , which boasts effortless acceleration. unfortunately, the used engine works with an eight-speed automatic transmission that's uncooperative when you want to get the most from that v-6's power. full-throttle kickdowns are drawn-out affairs as the transmission is in no hurry to downshift to a lower gear.
the xf sportbrake stays flat and planted in corners, but numb steering feel is a downer. you can tell jaguar wants this wagon to appeal to driving enthusiasts, but all in all i don't think there's enough here for them.
the xf sedan starts at a little less than $50,000, but to get the sportbrake body style you have to spend considerably more — like $22,000 more. add in optional features and it gets even more expensive; the as-tested price of this sportbrake s is around $85,000.
for the rest of my thoughts on the 2018 jaguar xf sportbrake, watch the video above.
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