Jaguar X-Type



  • icdchessicdchess Member Posts: 83
    The board ( ) has several people who have
    actually taken possession of X-Types. They, of course, are all in Europe. However,
    I have not been able to get lease pricing yet here in the U.S.. Does ANYONE have
    money factors and residuals yet?
  • mvargo1mvargo1 Member Posts: 298
    No lease information has yet been released by Jaguar Credit. The car could be leased by Chase or any other bank as the ALG residuals have been published. However Jaguar will probably have stronger numbers.
  • sargonivsargoniv Member Posts: 23
    I have an X-Type on order -- one of the second batch the local dealer will receive.

    My salesperson said yesterday that their first 18 X-Types had been held at the port in Va., but are released now and due to arrive here on the 17th. Originally I was told the first units would be here in mid July, so it seems they are pretty much on schedule after all.

    I have the option of dropping my order after driving one of the 18 if it is not what I expected, so overall things are looking up.
  • dsf4dsf4 Member Posts: 1
    For any of you that have physically seen or driven the new x-type, just how tight is the rear seat? I printed out a brochure on the
    x-type but no specs on leg room, etc.
  • mvargo1mvargo1 Member Posts: 298
    X type
    Leg room: 34.4
    Head room w/sunroof:37.5

    3 Series
    Leg room: 34.6
    Head room: 37.5

    Leg room: 33.0
    Head room: 41.7

    Leg room: 30.2
    Head Room: 37.3

    Leg Room: 33.4
    Head Room: 36.9
  • arcoatesarcoates Member Posts: 221
    I have sat in the backseat, and it is tight. I am 6'0 tall, which is a pretty normal size, and I felt squished. But, it is a compact car, so what do you expect. I can tell you though that the seats are comfortable, and aren't too low, so that makes the leg room issue not as large. The reg. wheelbase XJ on the other hand has no leg room and a very low seat which makes it very uncomfortable. So, the cheaper X-Type is more comfortable than an XJ in my opinon, odd really~ A.R.
  • icdchessicdchess Member Posts: 83
    I, too, have been in the X rears seats. I am 6' 2" and my hair just
    whisps the ceiling and with the front seat set to my specs, the back of the
    seat just touches my knee when I sit in the back seat. Several European
    members on the board have taken delivery. You may want to
    ask their opinions.
  • shehzadshehzad Member Posts: 52
    I just sat in my first X-type at the dealer today. The back is really, really tight--legroomwise. I'm only 5'8--so it should have been more spacious for me than for steve or Arcoates, but after sitting back there, I dunno how enthusiastic I'd be about buying one of them unless it was a solo-driveronly car. I think passengers would get very uncomfortable back there. The headroom's fine in the back, and the front space seemed great to me--it seems a lot more roomier than the XJ8 up front in fact.
  • mvargo1mvargo1 Member Posts: 298
    The rear seats are not huge, but hey that's on par with the rest of the class, as you can see from my previous message the Jag falls on the large side of average compared to the rest of the class. The front seat benafits from the transverse engine mount. Which gives a comfortable amount of legroom.

    If you need a lot of room in the back seat buy an Avalon or I30. You are not going to find a roomy back seat in a european sport sedan. Before any one gets excited, the I30 and Avalon are both considerably roomier than the next size of european car such as the S-Type or 5 series.
  • keninplacitaskeninplacitas Member Posts: 120
    mvargo1, Do you have information on front and rear seat leg room comparison with the 2002 A4? I understand the new A4 has been lengthened. I'm in the debating stage of purchase between the X-Type and the 2002 A4. ... Thanks, Ken
  • mvargo1mvargo1 Member Posts: 298
    I do not have relavent comparison info for the A4 mabye Audi offers this information on their web site.

    Incidentally Jaguar has released cars for test driving to PA dealers. I do not know about other states, but if you live in PA call your local dealer they should have cars that you can drive.
  • sargonivsargoniv Member Posts: 23
    Finally had a test drive -- 45 minutes in a 3.0 standard edition with a 5 speed manual transmission. I have a 3.0 sports version on order with an automatic, but this was the best the dealer could do.

    First impression -- it is very small, I knew it was a small car, but was not ready for this. Back seats are not wide enough -- leg room is good, no reason for a third set of seat belts. Quality was very high overall -- could not find a flaw, doors felt light when opened, but shut with a nice solid sound, handling was excellent -- spent most of the time on back roads at high speeds.

    It was difficult for me to keep the speed down since the car is very quiet and smooth particularly compared to my usual cars. Dealer said to hold it to 6000 RPM tops during the test drive -- I thought this was high, but what do I know? She kept telling me to shift down and hit the next curve at a high speed, and accelerate through so I could feel the AWD working. It worked very well, it is a cat for sure, and this was the SE version.

    It is difficult for me to judge a small engine like this since I normally drive a 5.8 Liter V8 with GT40 heads and a lot of other power making mechanicals, but I can say the 3.0 engine produces good torque at a low RPM just as the spec indicates and at 6000 RPM was still pulling hard -- a lot of torque under the curve. The brakes seem strong, but I was not excited with the pedal feel, it felt a little on the soft side. I noticed when I started the test drive that all four wheels were covered with brake pad dust which seemed strange for a car with only 102 miles on it. I felt the clutch pedal was too small and located too far to the right, but that is something one would get use to I am sure.

    Overall, I am rethinking my purchase -- it seems to have the high quality I expected, and drives and rides great, but for the price of the loaded car I have on order I have a lot of other options. Don't have to decide until my unit comes in with sports package and automatic.
  • akirbyakirby Member Posts: 8,062
    I think you may be experiencing a Ford characteristic. Lincoln LS' and other FoMoCo products seem to have "spongy" brake pedals. It bothered me at first until I got used to it. It absolutely does not affect actual braking performance at all. It just feels wierd until you get used to it. Several LS owners complained (including me) but later found that other models did the same thing and that it was normal.
  • rollierollie Member Posts: 337
    OK, I'm 32 and maybe a bit too conservative but does anybody else think Jaguar is shooting their brand equity in the foot by running radio and billboard commercials for the X-type touting 'X-rated styling'? Seems more suited to a Pontiac (what's the expression they use for those ribbed body panels - "ribbed for her pleasure") than a Jag to me. I guess I'm becoming an old fart before my time...

    [email protected]
  • giowagiowa Member Posts: 599
    I concur about the ad slogan. Too much sex is used in advertising. Sure, sex and cars can go hand-in-hand (who hasn't made out in one), but does a classy marque like Jag need to rely on bad sexual puns to move good metal? I say focus on the car. If it is a well built, reliable, sport sedan, Jag won't have any trouble selling it. And it won't need to tie the car to the adult industry in its advertising. I'm tired of being bombarded with sex when I turn on TV or radio. (Guess I'm a 37-yr-old foggie?)
  • arcoatesarcoates Member Posts: 221
    The Jaguar lines in their cars have always been very sexy. I don't know of another car that exudes sex than a Jaguar. It's like a gorgeous supermodel that you get to be with all the time. Or at least that's how I think of the Jaguar owners experience. So I don't have a problem with the campaign. It's not a sleazy porn commercial, they are just perpetuating the cars sexy lines~ A.R.
  • giowagiowa Member Posts: 599
    Jags are supposed to be classy. Exotic. Sensual. Exciting. Sure that can and usually does make them auto-erotic. But there are many ways to promote that. The ad comes across as being crass and sophomoric.

    Kind of like the difference between current classic older beauties like Elizabeth Hurley, Sela Ward, Mimi Rogers, etc. in a revealing, yet tasteful, evening gown versus Pamela Sue Anderson, Cortney Love, or an XFL cheerleader wearing a halter top and tight leather pants. Both can be sexually stimulating. But I prefer the image of the former for Jaguar. (If Jag wants to use sex to sell their cars, then I suggest they hire Ms Hurley.)
  • sargonivsargoniv Member Posts: 23
    Picked my X-Type sports version up Friday -- black and beautiful. Absolutely no flaws in fit, finish, of function. Only have a 100 or so miles on it so far.

    I was in the second group of cars at my dealer. The first 18 cars are being held in port in Va and the dealer has not been able to find out why. My unit and around ten others they have received came through Ga -- strange. Of course the first 18 were already sold, so the buyers are not too happy.
  • naturalcatnaturalcat Member Posts: 2
    Hi y'all...Just drove a phoenix red 2.5 and was impressed. The dealer indicated a willingness to mark down $500 or so on the price. I guess that's not bad for a car that just made it to market. My question is leasing. Should I? Cars rarely last more than 3 years with me. I get bored easily. I have a '98 Discovery with 32k and I know I'm going to take it in the shorts when it comes to resale. Anyway. What numbers should I be talking...Residuals, et al. Since the car is so new it's hard to figure this stuff out!
  • naturalcatnaturalcat Member Posts: 2
    I should add that I also drove a 3.0. The car definitely had more pep, but I have to wonder about the value. The 2.5 I drove had the premium package w/ sunroof, etc. and premium sound. All for the same $ as a stripper 3.0 with no options. Are 40 horses really worth the extra $? I'm sure some will say definitely, but for me...coming from a wimpy Discovery, I can't say that it is! Why so much with no additional upgrades?
  • joeandcarol2joeandcarol2 Member Posts: 152
    Whats up with the back doors on the X-type? They only open about 50 degrees or so. Why would i buy a 4 door with such ergonomically challanged doors? This is really lame. Seems like someone on the design team fell asleep. A mar on an otherwise great new vehicle.
  • bmms8bmms8 Member Posts: 86
    natural cat i don't think that the 35 extra horse power is really that useful, but if u do want a lot of kick out of your vehicle go for it, but the x-type is a light car and it will be pretty fast on the 2.5 liter, and plus you do save a lot of money on the 2.5

    joeandcarol2 what is so bad about the doors only opening 50 degrees, i think u can easily still fit in and out, 5 days ago a dealer near me had a little party to show off the x-types, and the doors werent that bad, either you are really dumb, because that isn't that bad, or your to weak to open the doors
  • joeandcarol2joeandcarol2 Member Posts: 152
    Well next time you are in the showroom open up the type S back doors you will see a big difference. Also the next time its raining and you are trying to load some grocery bags into the back seat you will notice the difference. No trust me I'm plenty strong enough. Are you so blinded by the new model hype you can't bear for a defect to be pointed out? And dumb? Well actually I'm a physicist. what kind of rocket scientist are you?
  • arcoatesarcoates Member Posts: 221
    I want to hear from people who have taken delivery of their X-types, any model. Write me up a mock review, like you would see from edmunds. Include everything from the way it handles (you don't have to wring the car out, but initial driving impressions) to interior comforts, list of features you have etc... I like to hear from real owners, not the auto press all of the time. Let's go~ A.R.
  • focusmatt2focusmatt2 Member Posts: 106
    Our local Jag dealer has just one X-type, a black 3.0 Sport, which I think fully loaded comes to about 40K.

    I really think it's a blessing, not a hindrance, that the X-type is based on the Mondeo and has AWD. the Mondeo is considered the FWD benchmark in terms of ride/handling in Europe, so this only helps increase the X's sporting attitude.
  • carjimcarjim Member Posts: 155
    So far I have not seen an X-type on the road here in the Dallas/Ft Worth area. Yet, I know the first allotment at three dealerships were "spoken for."
    Count me in along with arcoates (#324) and let's have some new owner input. Don't forget to include where you are and if you got a nickel or more off MSRP. Thanks!
  • jonty12jonty12 Member Posts: 101
    actually, they weren't all accounted for. can't speak for the dealership in fw, but for the other two, only about half have been spoken for.

    could explain why i too haven't seen any on the road yet either.
  • sargonivsargoniv Member Posts: 23
    I have an X-Type with 350 miles of experience so far:

    o Sports model
    o 3.0
    o Auto
    o Xenon
    o Standard Audio(will upgrade with non-Jag parts)

    On initial test drive of this car I had the shimmy described by some of the S-Type owners -- at 65 - 75 mph I could feel it in the wheel and on letting the wheel go, a slight, but visible side to side movement could be seen. The Standard demo model I had driven earlier did not have this problem. I was told this should not be and that it would be corrected before I came back later in the day. On arrival I found they had to change both left side tires. On this test drive the car was absolutely solid -- both the technician and the Service Manager had tested the car and signed-off that the problem had been corrected. I was impressed.

    Overall, the car is now perfect in fit, finish, and function as designed.

    I have driven a lot of production, modified, and custom cars in my time and would have to say this is the best handling small street sedan I have ever driven. It holds the road like it is on rails.

    Even with the Z-rated sports tires the ride is smooth and quiet. The sports tires do pass some road vibration to your hands on rough surfaces, but I personally like this road feel -- not as much feedback as a 3 class BMW in my opinion. The standard model I drove has a softer ride so if you haven't driven the X-Type you should try both -- you can feel a difference and some will prefer the standard model.

    Wind noise is just not noticeable at any speed I have driven.

    The brakes work well and seem to have good stopping capability, however, I had hoped they would put ventilated disks on the rear, at least as part of the sports package.

    The engine is impressive for such a small displacement and Jaguar's claim that they have 90% of the torque available over a wide RPM range is true. It pulls hard from the start and does not peak. Some may be interested in mileage -- so far with mixed city and road mileage the on-board computer calculates 20.9 miles per US gallon.

    The auto transmission shifts fine overall, but I would like to see an improvement in the shift-down times when it is triggered by the accelerator pedal. The transmission shifts up and down smoothly, and quickly during normal acceleration or deceleration, however, when you punch it with the pedal there is a noticable delay. I may be too picky here since I normally drive American cars with modified transmission shift points, but I believe Jaguar will have to reprogram it a bit. The Lincoln LS had a similar problem I understand, but most owners feel the latest update corrected the situation.

    This is the first car I have driven with Xenon lights and after using them for a few nights I believe they are well worth the cost -- much better than standard lights.

    Bottom line I am very satisfied with the X-Type.

    Anyway, sorry for the long response. I will be glad to answer any specific questions.
  • arcoatesarcoates Member Posts: 221
    Long is good. I want to hear everything, and you've done a good initial job. Now, as for the interior, what options did you get there? How do you find it? Functional? As luxurious as other Jags? Others in the class?~ A.R.

    p.S. Keep the reviews coming other owners
  • sargonivsargoniv Member Posts: 23
    I assume we have the same options you do -- I had to order the X1 package to get the X2 sports package I wanted, so I have all the things like auto headlights, wipers, etc., etc. -- things I probably would not have ordered. By the way all of these little features work very well. The auto wipers I like a lot. The auto headlights come on too early, but I think you have to run with them on all the time anyway.

    It is not as nice inside as the larger Jaguars, but I didn't want a larger Jaguar, so I don't have a problem with that. The air conditioning system does not have dual controls if that is important.

    The wood of course is gray and the wood on the doors has been removed in the sports model. I like the sports steering wheel and seats much better than the standard model -- some would go the other way. I find they have better support and in the back seat they seem to be a little wider -- the standard model has fair leg room in the back, but the seats are a little cramped on side room.

    I ordered a black car with the dove interior, however, when it came in it was black on black -- sales lady made a mistake here. Would not have ordered it this way, but had the option to take it or reorder. Actually the combination kind of grows on you, so I took it, but here (North Carolina) it does make it more difficult to cool down.

    The trunk space is large, larger than the full size Jaguars.

    I would like to hear from other owners as well.
  • arcoatesarcoates Member Posts: 221
    How do you find the controls? You must have the upgraded sound system, how do you like it? Any people sit in the back seat yet? I know it is down on legroom, but the seat is high, and I found it more comfortable than my XJ. Have you found it to drive like a FWD car or an AWD car? I've heard that it has a 60/40 F/R weight bias, and is more like a FWD car. More input from other owners please~ A.R.
  • bmms8bmms8 Member Posts: 86
    i was in an x-type last week and the x-type is really nice, there was no nav system but theere were to big screens instead of that, i thought that was quite imppressing, also there is a lot of wood, but i thought the seats weren't that comfortable, because every1 says that they r comfortable, but other than that, i think it is a great car, also the rims are really shiny, and the car has nice lines on it, also in the interior the buttons are not to cramped, onj the s-type it seems like there are millions of them, i liked the car, and hope it will be my future car, i just find it really expensive, a fully loaded 3.0 runz 4 about 47K or sumtin like that, a RL from acura is a lot better 4 2K less.....
  • slusherslusher Member Posts: 7
    I'm looking at the Jaguar X-Type for my next car. However, the nearest Jaguar dealer is 300 miles from where I live. I don't mind traveling to get the car I want, but I am concerened about maintenance and warranty work. Would I be out of luck if something needs rapairing? Would I have to travel the 300 miles to a Jaguar dealer, or do Lincoln dealers do warranty work for Jaguar?

    Is anybody here in that type situation, or have any insight they could provide me? Thanks in advance for any help.
  • bmms8bmms8 Member Posts: 86
    im pretty sure lincoln could do work on your x-type if you get it from your jag dealwership, but it would be extra...but lincoln share simalar parts...only on the s-type and x-type..
  • mbnut1mbnut1 Member Posts: 403
    I wouldn't count on Lincoln servicing the X type. Right now they don't have anything in their line up that shares any parts with it.

    BTW I drove a 2.5 auto nonsport. IMHO it is a nice car with exception of the amount of road noise that finds it's way into the cabin. About the same as my current A4. Other than that I liked it,nice looking and driving car
  • bmms8bmms8 Member Posts: 86
    what does IMHO mean?, and im pretty sure the x-type has less road noise than your aui A4
  • mbnut1mbnut1 Member Posts: 403
    In my humble opinion. It may be quieter but not by much. I drove it and my Audi over the same route back to back and they both have more noise than I would want in my next car.
  • bmms8bmms8 Member Posts: 86
    why isn't anyone talking about the x-type!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • jonty12jonty12 Member Posts: 101
    my guess is not enough owners yet.
  • bmms8bmms8 Member Posts: 86
    the jag just came out, maybe in a couple of months there will be a lot of people talking..
  • rnbesquirernbesquire Member Posts: 16

    Been reading your comments, and frankly, I'm wavering on my decision to order an '02 ES300. Can you answer some questions?

    Here in sunny AZ, I need to know that the A/C in the X will blow COLD. Also interested in the driver's seat; does the adj. lumbar support work good? Does the car w/ the Premium Pkg. have a std. CD player? Are chrome wheels available? Free loaner when yours is in the shop?
    Is the trunk capacity adequate? Full size spare or donut?

    Your comments would be appreciated!
  • im_brentwoodim_brentwood Member Posts: 4,883
    I drove one in South Florida.. the Air IS cold and we need it here! (I live in Orlando... reminds me of a rainforest)

    I found the seats very comfortable (I have found few Japanese cars with comfortable seats, but that's just me)

    Spare? I dunno. I'd imagine full-size knowing Jaguar. That being said I have had to use the spareinmy 95 Vanden Plas once in 6 years.

    Chrome Wheels? Doubt Jaguar offers them. Probably an aftermarket thing (Few European mfr's offer them.. for a long time they were illegal in some European countries as the chroming process weakens the wheel on a structural level slightly)

    Audio Pkg includes a CD Changer... I'dimagine the prem pkg does.. why not test drive one? :) It's MUCH more responsive than an ES300 but does not have the..err.. "isolationist" qualities of the ES.

  • im_brentwoodim_brentwood Member Posts: 4,883

    Someone mentioned comments from Owners...

    The car's been out MAYBE 2 weeks! :)

    Also, I saw my first production one recently.... at a dealer auction.

    Sold for $2,700 over MSRP!

    So.. sounds like worththe wait so far if it helps...

  • denkdenk Member Posts: 75
    1.AC is cold-I've test driven 3 of them and the AC is very cold.
    2.Driver seat is very comfortable with the many possible adjustments--lumbar adjustment seems ok but hard to evaluate unless you are driving car for a longer period of time than a test drive.
    3.CD player is not standard with premium package in U.S. You have to buy a $1200 sound package to get a CD. And even with the sound pkg the cd player is in the trunk. This is a major negative with this car. The marketing folks at Jaguar/Ford really blew it on this one.
    4.Chrome wheels-after market item
    5.Free loaner- Probably depends on dealer.
    6.Trunk space is outstanding-Spare is full size
  • sargonivsargoniv Member Posts: 23
    I have 500+ miles on an X-Type sports model in North Carolina -- been in the high 90s and low 100s since I brought it home -- also, very high humidity here.

    >>> Here in sunny AZ, I need to know that the A/C in the X will blow COLD.

    Should not be a problem.

    >>> Also interested in the driver's seat; does the adj. lumbar support work good?

    I like the sports seats best, still working with the adjustments to find the best position. Lumbar support works fine for me.

    >>> Does the car w/ the Premium Pkg. have a std. CD player?

    No - must order the $1200 audio package mention above. After market CDs will be a problem since Jaguar has a new fiber optics interface in the X-Type.

    >>> Are chrome wheels available?

    Not from Jaguar -- maybe after market.

    >>> Free loaner when yours is in the shop?

    Yes, but this is up to the dealer.

    >>> Is the trunk capacity adequate?

    Yes, 16cu. ft. -- largest trunk in any Jaguar model.

    >>> Full size spare or donut?

    Both the standard model and sports model have a full-sized tire. The standard model I tested had a stamped steel wheel. My sports model has a fifth matching cast wheel.
  • c320buyerc320buyer Member Posts: 17
    Dealer said they were having probs. with the NAV which will delay delivery of any NAV car for 3 months. Don't know if I should wait or not. Remember when the C320 first came out? Same thing no Comand at first.
  • bmms8bmms8 Member Posts: 86
    sargoniv is right in every aspect, the prices are 30595(including dest charge)2500 for prem.....1275 for auto trans (standard on 3.0 which costs 35950)550 for metallic paint.....2200 for nav (and yes there is a delay because they are thinking about changing the voice controls on them)2000 for sport, 1650 for jag net and phone n(1500 only on 3.0) 1200 for wheather package, but if you get the sport, it's only 600 because of DSC, 1200 for 10 speakers, and 6 CD, 675 for xenon, and that are all the prices, but if you do want some chrome wheeels there aren't, but my dealer sent me the big brochure, and on the 3rd to last page there are some nice alloy wheels, and i am pretty sure if you get the sport package they would swap them, they sre 419 though, and of couse there are some accesories..but most people dont need them....
  • xtypebuyerxtypebuyer Member Posts: 7
    I love the steering feel on X type. I felt no torque steer at all entering or exiting on or off ramps. It was a sport but there was a little body roll but nothing uncomfortable or out of reason. You stab the gas and you are moving (unlike the C320).
    There was some delay in the auto. downshift like when passing but because it is a adaptive tranny maybe this will improve. All I can say is I am buying one as soon as I can find what I want. I guess I have too fat an [non-permissible content removed] for the sport seat (not wide enough) the seat not my [non-permissible content removed]. The ride was pretty rough. I have a 330i and the Jag is smoother than it, it at least absorbs some of the road conditions. The car I drove was a Silver Sport and it was beautiful. Even the small spoiler did not look squirly on this car. I have to tell you though that I followed a Taurus SE into the dealership and I'm betting the spoiler has the same part # as the Jag. The rear end is very similar. I think I will buy the x1, weather, cd. in Silver and then put on the 17" wheels. At least in silver the chrome on the non sport will be less apparent than the dark colors. Dealer quoted $41070 plus T&L.
  • bmms8bmms8 Member Posts: 86
    the 3.0 is very quick, it is as quick as a tl type-s if not quiker, they both are 0-60 in 6.6 secs, that is even quiker than a XK8, but the 6.6 is only for manual....but that is very nice anyways..
  • dhanleydhanley Member Posts: 1,531
    I stopped by the jag dealer today to peek at an x-type. What follows is a stream-of-conciounes review. Comparisons: i drive a 328i and i frequently also drive a '97 saab 900 SE turbo.

    Looks like a very substantial car. I have not typically been crazy about jags looks wise, but this car is fairly attractive. Exterior fit & finish is great with one noticeable exception. The back of the trunk did not quite line up with the rear quarter panel.

    The trunk is quite big. Not too deep, but wide and long. I'd prefer it a bit shorter and longer, i guess but i won't complain! It'll hold a lot of stuff. The interior material of the trunk is better material than in my saab or bimmer, and it has some nice looking tie-downs. There is also a full-size spare. Bonus.

    Interior looks pretty nice, it's the ivory. The leather on the seats looks great. The leather on the steering wheel is ok, but feels a bit hard. The plastic on the doors does feel a bit hard. On the saab it's actual padded vinyl, and in the 3, it's a much softer plastic. There's a few pieces that look cheap, but it'd say the interior looks pretty high-rent overall. The wood is darker than i'd like but there's lot of it.

    BIG Problem.. With the seats down, and seat back as vertical as i like, i'm ON the roof; head on the headliner. Pretty tight! The sales guy shows up about then, verifies for himself that i don't quite fit, and says the seat should give 1/2 to 3/4 an inch over time. I should hope it won't! My BMW one didn't! I ask if i can order the car without the sunroof, and he says yes, but it's part of a package of options, some of which i think i might like. The fold-down seats for one. One reason i am looking at the car is because i think i may need a AWD car in awhile, and my wife would want to take it skiing. If i lose the sunroof, no fold-down seats, and there's no ski pass-thru ( come on, guys!! ). He's very decent about it, and says the xj8 has more room, and i say the xj8 is out of my price range, and i was partially looking because of the AWD besides. We talk a bit about sport cars and manual transmissions. He even has a '62 jag, and his wife has an old mercedes and MG.

    I sit in the backseat. More of that great leather. Very nice. Even the seat pocket looks like leather. My upper body fits pretty well, but i am reclined more than i like to, and there's not a ton of foot room. In fact, between the footwell being not much longer than my shoes ( 12's ), the doors only opening 50 degrees as someone mentioned, and a somewhat high rear door bottom sill, i have a hard time getting out. The car salesmen are all watching me. They either think i'm a clod, or they've lost a sale. Maybe both.

    At this point, i am a bit down on the car, and i let him know this. I am ready to go, but the salesman insists that i take a test drive. Ok, twist my arm! :)

    The test drive car is a manual transmission 3.0L, no sport package.

    I'm a passenger for the first 1/2 mile. The car damps out bumps & road vibration pretty well. Pickup seems pretty good when he guns it. The car cools off pretty quickly and the AC cuts down right away. The BMW does that gradually.

    I'm in the driver seat now. I fool with the gizmos. Some pieces feel a bit flimsy. When i put the armrest up, it vibrates for several seconds afterwards, and the sunroof headliner had a lot of give to it when i was just sliding it. The sunroof seemed a bit short. The sun visors seemed a bit hard and grabby but that might soften up over time. I prefer the BMW where the lights are in the roof, not the visor. The dash seems pretty well constructed, and the fit & finish seems very good. The door is pretty close to my arm, not TOO close, but noticeably so.

    OK. I shift into gear. I don't get quite the tactile response out of this clutch as i get out of the 3-series clutch, but it's pretty good. This shifter has a REALLY short throw. It's not as gated as the 3-series gates, but i have no doubt that i'm in gear. The gas pedal makes the engine rev more quickly than i expect, and the clutch grabs a bit higher up, so a smooth takeoff take a try or two. Off the line power is ok, seems on par with the 328. Midrange power seems a little less than i expected considering the 231 hp rating? The engine seems to respond AFTER i press the gas pedal. There seems to be some lag or play in the throttle linkage. This really annoys me. OTOH, the sound of the engine is fabulous, i'd rev the car a lot just to hear it. I zig through a corner or two. It handles them ok, but for some reason i don't have the confidence to really flog it. I think this is because i'm not getting quite the steering feedback i'm used to. It does hook up better in turns when i gas it. I guess that's the AWD doing it's thing.

    We get onto the highway. It's hard to merge left because of that $%[email protected] sticker in the back left window. I almost merge into a white tempo who races me for the rightmost lane. On the highway it feels very composed. It soaks up bumps and texture substantially better than my 3, and much better than the saab. I am still missing a little steering feedback, though. The oddity with the throttle linkage continues to annoy me. I feel that the car is geared pretty tall, i want to pas on a slight uphill grade, and i need to shift to 4th, and i actually use third to hear that wonderful engine noise again ( heh ). I think maybe there is no VVT, so the engine is cammed to make it's torque at high RPM's for a good HP number, so perhaps my 328 is actually more powerful at the low RPM's i'm using to keep the salesguy happy.

    On the way back, we're going downhill on the freeway, and i hit 70 without detecting it at all. Better slow down, cops are around. When we pull off, i am nervous because there's a light at top of the ramp, and i'm not that confident with the clutch. The uphill start is worrying me. Fortunately, the light is green. There is a few blocks left to go to the dealer, and i drive more slowly than i normally do. I am not quite connecting with the car. I pull into the dealer's lot timidly, and park a bit slowly. I notice the cubby over the shifter is broken. The owner of the dealer did that supposedly. What does this mean for long-term durability? I look around the car once again, and i think some tiny details like the jag button to open the trunk are a bit tacky. The salesguy seems to sense i didn't really connect with the car, but he hands me a brochure and his card anyways.

    likes: some great accouterments, big trunk, lovely engine note, good shifter, AWD, pretty damn good looks.

    dislikes: doesn't really feel like 231hp, odd throttle response, bit cramped in some areas, some parts seemed a bit flimsy--ford parts bin?

    Overall, with the prices all being in spitting distance of each other, i think i'd prefer the new 330xi or the a4 3.0L . Maybe the jag really needed the sports p
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