2020 Jaguar XE Review
Car Tested: 2020 Jaguar XE P 250 SE; Road Test No. 1163; Test Location: Mumbai
Price OTR Mumbai: Rs. 53.55 - 56.07 lakhs
The baby Jaguar gets a mid-life facelift with exterior and interior changes along with new BS6-compliant engines
The XE has not been the kind of success Jaguar had hoped it would be. Launched in 2015, the entry-level saloon has faced stiff competition from premium compact SUVs and immediate rivals like the BMW 3-Series and Mercedes C-Class. Now, Jaguar is aiming to take a big piece of the pie with the updated XE. Design and technology changes aside, Jaguar is saying the XE is more comfortable without compromising its legendary driving dynamics. Has Jaguar managed to strike the ultimate balance between luxury and sportiness? Will the XE prove itself amidst capable rivals like the 3-Series and C-Class? We bring the answers.
Exteriors - Design is never really a problem with Jaguar cars. In fact, they are amongst the most stunning cars in their respective segments. The pre-facelift XE was a looker too but Jaguar designers have made it look even better. The front is quite aggressive and the re-designed headlamps have made all the difference. The XE looks like an angry cat, just the kind one wants it to. The sloping bonnet, beautifully executed bumper and a proportionate grille, all add tremendous character to the XE's styling.
The subtle cosmetic changes make the Jaguar XE look more aggresive & sporty
The side does away with little lines but the relatively tight proportions give it that authentic sport sedan look. The alloy wheels, particularly on the SE variant seem a little small. Larger size with a more intricate design would've made the side angle even more appealing. The rear sees subtle changes. It still feels a bit bulky but the redesigned tail lights and dual exhaust pipes bring the sporting appeal. We think the XE's in-your-face design approach makes it one of the better-looking cars in this segment and is sure to get you noticed.
Interiors - Step inside and the XE's cabin spells luxury in bold letters. The interiors feel quite premium the moment you enter in it. And that instant feeling of being in an upmarket car is the change you are likely to notice the most. The previous XE had a nice cabin too, but with richer materials, visually appealing elements and more equipment, this new version takes the game forward.
The quality of materials give you a sense of luxury as soon as you enter the cabin
There are many other noticeable changes in here. The new steering wheel looks quite interesting and feels great to hold. Ergonomics, in general, are spot on. The seating position is a bit low but that is how it should be a sedan. The seats are quite supportive and we like how everything is within an easy reach. Some people may find the deletion of a pop-up gear selector a bit of a bummer but we prefer a good old stick for a 'driver's car' which Jaguar has offered with the facelift.
The XE is available in only two variants, S and SE. Standard equipment is quite strong as you get an auto-dimming rear-view mirror, dual-zone climate control, 10-way electric front seats, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity features and a 10-inch Touch Pro infotainment system as standard. Top-spec SE variant adds other goodies such as wireless charging, Ebony veneer finish, and driver seat memory amongst others. The updated infotainment system is a joy to use with great graphics and intuitive touch interface. The digital instrument cluster is excellent too giving you a host of details in clear, legible font.
The biggest drawback of the XE are the rear seats which are not very spacious and can only accommodate two people
The cabin of the XE is a little tight. Front passengers won't find a problem but the rear passengers may complain about the headroom. The less width means the backseat is best left for two. Quality, however, is genuinely impressive, giving you that typical feel-good factor you expect from European cars. We are pleased with how well Jaguar has polished the interior of the XE. They've improved in key areas and this cabin feels closer to the likes of the BMW 3-Series than ever before.
Performance - The Jaguar XE is offered with 2 engine options with the petrol model now getting only a single state of tune (the earlier different state of tune for different variants didn't make much sense anyway). Known as the P250, the XE petrol belts out 250 PS of power and 365 Nm of torque from a low 1500 RPM, peaking at 4000 RPM, giving a very wide torque band, resulting in linear performance and great drivability. Turbo lag is well contained and the motor feels eager throughout the rev range, taking 6.5 seconds to reach the ton (0.6 seconds faster than the Velar and 0.7 seconds slower than the BMW 330i).
The petrol engine offers linear power delivery and feels engaging to drive
The same engine is also used in the Velar but doesn't feel all that sprightly, something to do with the weight as well since the XE tips the scales at 200 kgs less. The engine is sweet-sounding and really screams to the redline which comes under 6500 RPM with usual shifts happening around 6000 RPM. However, take manual control of the gears using the steering mounted paddles and the motor will rev close to 7000 RPM in first gear.
The 8-speed gearbox is quick enough with shifts but a bit too optimistic at times, giving an additional downshift in slow-moving conditions. There is a Sports mode for the gearbox which alters the speed of shifts while there are 4 driving modes on offer - Winter, Eco, Comfort and Dynamic, these alter the engine, steering and air condition. Fuel economy is between 8 to 12 km/l and the petrol model has a bigger fuel tank capacity at 61.7-litres against the diesel's 56-litres. And yes, both the engines are now BS6 compliant!
Driving Dynamics - The Jaguar XE made a definite mark in the segment by offering great levels of dynamism. That hasn't changed with the facelift and it continues to be one of the best cars in terms of ride and handling balance. Weight has been kept in check with the use of aluminium, near to 50:50 weight distribution has been achieved too and while the platform is the same as the F-Pace and the Velar, the big difference lies in the overall feel of driving this Jag, it's fab!
Thanks to the near 50:50 weight distribution, the Jaguar XE has an outstanding ride and handling balance
Body roll is very well contained and Jaguar's first attempt at an electric power steering is nothing short of a joy to use, heavy at lower speeds but weighs up brilliantly at higher speeds although it's not a very quick steering but feels a bit like a hydraulic unit. The car uses an integral link rear suspension which has separate components to tackle lateral and longitudinal forces, the ride quality is brilliant, the car absorbs almost everything in its stride without a hiccup and rides like a bigger sedan. High-speed stability is excellent and so are the brakes. The ground clearance of 125 mm is ample as the baby Jag doesn't scrape on speed-breakers.
Safety and After Sales Service - The XE gets 6-airbags, ABS with EBD and traction control. The facelifted model also features Lane Keep Assist and Driver Fatigue Monitor. The XE has scored a full 5-star rating at Euro NCAP making it a very safe car. JLR's dealer network is not as strong as the German brands but is improving.
Verdict - The XE remains one of the best driver's cars in the segment and is certainly a looker! The facelift has made the package more appealing. The XE has built on its strengths like sharp design and sorted dynamics and has worked on areas like ride comfort and a more premium cabin. The result is an incredibly strong package which is all ready to take on the established rivals. Some shortfalls like a slightly cramped backseat still remain but at Rs. 53.9 lakhs, on-road Mumbai, there is no denying that the XE is a better value and a car that needs to be seriously considered, if you want a compact luxury saloon.
* Sporty design with a pinch of elegance
* Luxurious interior with outstanding fit and finish
* Superb driving dynamics and ride quality
* Comes with a 5-star safety rating
What's Not So Cool
* Could have done with bigger wheels
* Rear seats could have been more spacious
Alternatives: - Mercedes C-Class, Audi A4, BMW 3-Series
2020 Jaguar XE Specifications
* Engine: 1997cc, 4-Cyl, Petrol | 1999cc, 4-Cyl, Diesel
* Power: 250 PS @ 5500 RPM | 180 BHP @ 4000 RPM
* Torque: 365 Nm @ 1500-4000 RPM | 430 Nm @ 1750-2500 RPM
* Top Speed: 250 km/hr | 228 km/hr
* 0-100 km/hr: 6.5 seconds
* Transmission: 8-Speed AT
* Fuel Consumption: 8-12 km/l
* Fuel Type: Petrol | Diesel
* Tyre Size: 225/50/17 (Front & Rear)
* Suspension: Double Wishbone (Front), Integral Link (Rear)
* Brakes: Disc (Front & Rear)
* Safety: 6 Airbags, ABS with EBD, ESP, Lane Keep Assist, Driver Fatigue Monitor
2020 Jaguar XE Dimensions
* Overall length x width x height: 4691 mm X 2075 mm X 1416 mm
* Wheelbase: 2835 mm
* Ground Clearance: 125 mm
* Fuel Tank Capacity: 61.7-litres | 56-litres
Further Reading -
2020 Jaguar XE
2020 Jaguar XE
The Jaguar XE gets a mid-life facelift and it now looks meaner and has enhanced interiors. The engines are BS6 compliant and the XE continues to remain a very involving car to drive. The Jaguar XE is a very nice package and there’s not much that can go wrong with it.