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Monday, 17 October 2011

Infiniti fx 2011

Infiniti fx 2011 and get MSRP, invoice price, used car book values, expert reviews, photos, features, pros and cons, equipment
Infiniti fx 2011
 Infiniti fx 2011
Infiniti fx 2011

Tart up a few mass-market sedans with leather interiors and power accessories, slap on a big hood Infiniti fx 2011
Infiniti fx 2011

Infiniti fx 2011

Infiniti fx 2011

Infiniti fx 2011

Infiniti fx 2011

Infiniti fx 2011

Infiniti fx 2011

Infiniti fx 2011
The 2011 Infiniti FX can look like a coupe if you squint just right—and that's exactly the effect Infiniti was going for with this sexy crossover design. The high-utility wagonlike profile is there; it's just not the priority in this design.

Last redesigned for 2009, the FX inherited an even more aggressive form, with a lower front grille, plus a few more styling details to the exterior—including rippled headlight and taillight designs and metallic ducts just behind the front wheels. Inside, too, although the design of the new Infiniti FX feels warmer and more sophisticated than the previous version, it's also undeniably more cluttered. The sheer busyness of the design might bother some—with too many curves and cues that are shared with the Nissan Cube MPV—though otherwise it feels rich and elegant.

The Infiniti FX can be had as an FX35, with a 303-horsepower, 3.5-liter V-6, or as an FX50, with a 390-hp, 5.0-liter V-8. Both offer a choice of rear- or all-wheel drive and get a new seven-speed automatic transmission. For most buyers, the V-6 will be plenty fast, and the engine is still among the sweetest V-6 engines around. With either of the engines, the seven-speed automatic shifts quickly and responsively, too. The V-8 is even faster—about a second faster to 60 mph, in about five seconds—but V-6 version with rear-wheel drive are clearly the best-handling of the bunch, with all-wheel-drive models possessing a different steering feel and V-8s seeming noticeably heavier. Overall, steering feel is about as good as it gets in a utility vehicle of any kind, and body control is superb. You'd never guess you're in such a heavy vehicle; the FX has great poise without ever feeling tanklike.

The interior of the 2011 Infiniti FX35 and FX50 is in many ways also comparable to that of a sports car or sport sedan. While it gives front occupants plenty of comfort and enveloping support, it neglects backseat passengers to a degree, and cargo space suffers because of the curvy design.

In addition, the FX35 and FX50 have all the safety features that buyers of this type of vehicle should expect: standard front side airbags, side-curtain bags that protect outboard front and rear passengers, anti-lock brakes, and electronic stability control.There are also a few high-tech options that might help avoid an accident in the first place. Lane Departure Prevention follows lane markings on the road, notifies the driver, and can even apply the brakes lightly, while an advanced cruise control system can bring the FX to a complete stop if traffic slows.

The FX50 comes with bigger, showier wheels, but that's about the only difference between the two models. Options are limited to big-ticket tech features like a lane-departure warning system, an adaptive suspension, adaptive bi-xenon headlamps, and a navigation system with an especially good display and interface. The navigation system comes with a 9.3-gigabyte music-storage feature, and Bluetooth is well-integrated.

Infiniti FX is the Infiniti is the largest, which is sold in the United Kingdom, but at the same time, it is a four-wheel drive, sports is more roader, so the chest, like cars Porsche Cayenne and the BMW X6 , with particular attention to the driver more than outright practicality. It 'was initially available in FX37 powered by a gasoline engine V6 and the V8-powered FX50, but the most popular model is FX30d - 3.0-liter V6 diesel, which was introduced in mid-2010.
 This is the kind of car that some people call a "sport utility vehicle" or an SUV for short. The Infiniti FX looks much closer to the sport utility with powerful engines, highway capacity and the presence impressive track record. Infiniti claims that the mixed form of an off-road vehicle with the performance of a coupe - in fact, the V6 uses the same engine as the superb Nissan 370Z.
Although the impact of the road, you just want to go when it comes to utility is part of its name: if you are looking for a heavy Lugger, then FX is probably not for you. The trunk is quite small, this type of car, and although the rear seat folds flat to higher loads, has little in and out of the road.
 Inside it feels comfortable luxury. Those familiar with Nissan will be able to identify some of the switches and buttons other models, but they were combined with new high quality materials. The result is an interior that combines a refined look, with the construction of superior quality. The seats are for special praise: they are fit, very adjustable, can have a quilt style Bentley on some models and be heated and ventilated. They are almost as comfortable as the seats get it. This is actually the second generation Infiniti FX, although the first time it was officially available in the UK - Sales of Hyundai began in Britain in late 2009.

Besides a few minor cosmetic and content-related changes, the Infiniti FX lineup returns unchanged for 2011.

Sporty luxury crossover SUVs like the 2011 Infiniti FX37 and FX50 seem to be gaining in popularity. And with the FX, Infiniti emphasizes "sport" over utility. Built on Infiniti's G37 sedan platform, the FX features a carlike ride and nimble handling and is backed by a confident V6 or a commanding V8 under the hood.

Of course, it's still a luxury crossover, and the Infiniti FX indulges occupants with a plush and modern cabin blessed with all of the high-tech and luxury trappings expected of vehicles in this price range. The interior surrounds passengers with top-notch materials while the driver enjoys multiple standard and optional driver aids enhancing convenience and safety. Notable features include a clever top-view camera, adaptive cruise control, intelligent brake assist and a lane departure warning and prevention system.

Unfortunately, the Infiniti FX has some drawbacks that its high-tech wizardry can't solve. Luggage space is quite a bit smaller than what you get from some competitors, as is rear-seat space -- larger passengers will feel a bit cramped back there. And the FX's impressive handling comes at the expense of ride quality. Some may find the stiffer suspension a bit too harsh for their tastes, especially with the optional larger wheels.

If utility is a priority, the 2011 Infiniti FX35 and FX50 probably aren't your best choices. Though they're not as sporty, the Acura MDX, Lexus RX 350 and Lincoln MKX provide more passenger and cargo space. The BMW X6 and Porsche Cayenne represent the FX's closest performance rivals, but they're more expensive. All things considered, the Infiniti FX lineup deserves a close look if you want a lot of sport from your luxury crossover.

The 2011 Infiniti FX35 and FX50 are midsize luxury crossover SUVs available in a single, well-equipped trim level. The V6-powered FX35 can be had with either rear- or all-wheel drive, while the V8-powered FX50 is only offered with AWD.

Standard features for the FX35 include 18-inch alloy wheels, automatic xenon headlights, foglights, a sunroof, power-folding heated outside mirrors, keyless ignition/entry, a power liftgate, leather upholstery, full power accessories, eight-way power front seats, an auto-dimming rearview mirror and a manual tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel with audio controls. Also standard are dual-zone automatic climate control, a back-up camera, Bluetooth and an 11-speaker Bose surround-sound audio system with a six-CD changer, auxiliary audio/USB connections, digital music storage and satellite radio.

Options include a Premium package, which features roof rails, heated and ventilated front seats, driver seat memory, quilted leather seating, a power tilt-and-telescoping steering column, a 360-degree parking camera system, front and rear parking sensors, a navigation system with real-time traffic and weather, a Zagat restaurant guide, a larger touchscreen display, voice-activated controls, expanded digital music storage and Bluetooth streaming audio.

Standard equipment for the FX50 includes all of the above plus 20-inch wheels, a more advanced climate control system with air filtration and a cargo cover.

The FX35 makes available a Deluxe Touring package (which requires the Premium package) that includes 20-inch wheels, wood interior trim, metal pedals and the cargo cover. The FX50's Deluxe Touring is similar but adds 21-inch wheels. The Technology package (which requires the Deluxe Touring package) adds automatic wipers, adaptive cruise control, adaptive headlamps, intelligent brake assist and a lane-departure warning and prevention system.

A Sport package is available for the FX50 only, and adds dark-tinted exterior trim, active rear steering, adaptive two-mode suspension dampers, paddle shifters and sport front seats

The 2011 Infiniti FX35 is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 that produces 303 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. The FX50 is powered by a 5.0-liter V8 that produces 390 hp and 369 lb-ft of torque. A seven-speed automatic with manual shift control is the only transmission available. Rear-wheel drive is standard for the FX35; an all-wheel-drive system with a rear bias to preserve the vehicle's sporty handling capabilities is optional. The FX50 is only offered with AWD.

Acceleration is quick for either model, with a 0-60-mph sprint taking just 6.6 seconds for the FX35 and 5.5 seconds for the FX50. The EPA estimates fuel consumption for the AWD FX35 at 16 mpg city/21 mpg highway and 18 mpg combined, while rear-drive models are rated at 16/23/19 mpg. The FX50 is estimated at 14/20/16 mpg.
Standard safety features for the 2011 Infiniti FX35 and FX50 include antilock disc brakes with brake assist, front-seat-mounted side airbags, full-length side curtain airbags, traction control and stability control. A lane-departure warning and prevention system is optional, as are adaptive cruise control and intelligent brake assist. The latter uses the laser range finder from the adaptive cruise control to analyze closing speeds to an obstacle ahead. If a forward collision is imminent, the system sounds a warning to prompt driver action and can automatically apply the brakes up to 0.5g.

In crash tests, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety awarded the Infiniti FX models its highest score of "Good" for frontal-offset impact protection. Recent Edmunds brake testing yielded very favorable results for both FX versions. Stopping from 60 mph required only 114 feet for the FX35 and 117 feet for the FX50.

The 2011 Infiniti FX features an interior that is as luxurious as you'll find in this category. Supple leathers, rich wood trim and soft-touch materials grace nearly every surface of the cabin. The audio and navigation systems may be a little tricky to use at first, but once acclimated, operation is simple and intuitive. The optional 360-degree camera is particularly helpful when maneuvering in tight spaces, as it provides a top-down view of the vehicle in relation to its surroundings.

The front seats have plenty of adjustments to satisfy nearly any body type, aided by ample head- and legroom. The rear seats, on the other hand, may be cramped for larger folk compared to other luxury SUVs. Luggage space behind the rear seats is about average, measuring 25 cubic feet. Folding the seats flat increases total cargo volume to 62 cubes, still well short of what most competitors offer.

In terms of handling and ride quality, both the 2011 Infiniti FX35 and FX50 deliver similar experiences. On twisting mountain roads, the FX displays impressive road-holding prowess and confidence, aided by strong, consistent brakes and a tight and direct steering feel. The trade-off, however, is a stiffer ride on the highway. Opting for the larger wheel sizes only compounds matters, increasing road noise and impact harshness.

The V6-powered FX35 delivers a smooth stream of power while the seven-speed automatic transmission executes shifts quickly and smoothly. Most drivers will find that this engine provides more than enough power. For those who need more, the FX50 obliges with a flood of torque that launches this big SUV toward the horizon with ease. In most situations, the V8 is pleasantly refined, but closer to the redline it exhibits some coarseness and vibration that's absent in rivals like the BMW X6 or Porsche Cayenne.
Hoping to gauge some more interest in Europe, Infiniti announced today that it will offer the European market a limited-edition Infiniti FX37S and the FX50S.

The Infiniti FX Limited Edition will be limited to just 100 units across Western Europe with 18 allocated for the UK. All individually numbered units will feature Black Obsidian “˜Scratch Guard’ paintwork as standard, with a Moonlight White pearl metallic available as an option. It will ride on 21 inch “˜Turbine’ design alloy wheels, which are finished in dark Graphite. The radiator grille, side air vents and roof rails are in similar trim.

On the inside, the Infiniti FX Limited Edition gets illuminated “˜Infiniti’ door sills, Graphite leather upholstered seats, upper door panels and dashboard with contrasting stitching, and a luxurious Alcantara headlining. There is also genuine carbon fiber used on the dashboard, center console and door panels, replacing the standard “˜cello flame maple wood veneer.

Running a luxury brand used to be simple. Tart up a few mass-market sedans with leather interiors and power accessories, slap on a big hood ornament, jack the price through the roof, then sit back and watch the gravy train flow. These days it couldn't be more different. You need dedicated luxury platforms and halo cars and marketing tie-ins. And if you really want to be taken seriously among the cognoscenti, you need an in-house performance tuner to craft your own AMG or M-series line of cars.

Which brings us to Infiniti, the formerly North American-only luxury brand. It has been going toe-to-toe with Mercedes and BMW in some product segments for years, but with aspirations of competing with the big two luxury marques globally, it needs to put some muscle behind its nascent Infiniti Performance Line brand. So that 414-horsepower Infiniti FX Sebastian Vettel Version you saw at Frankfurt? Yep, it's coming, according to an interview with Nissan Executive Vice President Andy Palmer on the company's corporate blog. And although it won't necessarily be branded an IPL car, Palmer says the Vettel FX will serve as a pilot, to prove that Infiniti can sell "low-volume, very special versions, and be able to charge a premium."

Vettel took his second straight Formula 1 title with a victory in Japan this weekend, and Infiniti might as well capitalize on its marketing partnership with Red Bull Racing. You don't spend upwards of $10 million on a racing deal if you're not going to use it to sell cars. Of course, Vettel is hardly a celebrity in the U.S., so we'll have to wait to hear some official word about North American plans. "Right now," Nissan PR told us, "it is still simply a concept."
Infiniti fx 2011

Jaguar xj 2011

Jaguar xj 2011 luxury sedan featuring reviews of its performance, comfort, function, design and build quality

Jaguar xj 2011
 Jaguar xj 2011
Jaguar xj 2011

photos and see exterior, interior, engine and cargo photos Jaguar xj 2011
Jaguar xj 2011

Jaguar xj 2011

Jaguar xj 2011

Jaguar xj 2011

Jaguar xj 2011

Jaguar xj 2011

Jaguar xj 2011

Jaguar xj 2011

2011 Jaguar XJ is like discovering new features, which gives it a more modern style that race mixing predecessor impressive V8 engine completely mad. The materials are superior to most of the time this breakthrough super luxury saloon was built in the lightweight aluminum body. For personal considerations, there are some drawbacks: not available all-wheel drive and a competitor of other offers spacious (rear). Finally, find what you need in the vehicle, and the glamorous lifestyle of the 2011 Jaguar XJ.

The 2011 Jaguar XJ has the three engines (direction injection) pick: 5.0L AJ-V8 Gen III naturally aspirated engine (385 horsepower), 5.0L AJ-V8 Gen III supercharged engine (470 hp), and 5.0 Liter AJ-V8 Gen III supercharged engine (510 hp).All deliver via 6-speed automatic transmission with Jaguar Sequential Shift™ (and JaguarDrive Selector™. Able to choose the Drive, Sport Automatic or Manual gearshift modes with one touch mounted paddles.

2011 Jaguar XJ offers a highlight of the standard features: 19 "alloy wheels and Aleutian available in four 19" and 20 "light alloy wheels (either painted or polished surfaces), Jaguar 600W Premium Sound System (hard drive and media center) , 16/12 so soft grained leather heated and cooled front seats and heated rear seats, soft leather instrument panel Grain, phosphor blue halo illumination and interior mood lighting, and dual zone climate control.

Opting 2011 Jaguar XJL (includes or replaces features XJ): 19 "alloy wheels Toba and available for four 19" and 20 "light alloy wheels (either painted or polished surfaces), a soft leather seats 20/20 grained (with contrasting piping, and tonal stitching embossed headrests, heated and cooled front seats, plus rear seat massage function), rear tray, rear illuminated vanity mirrors, manual rear side window blinds, electric rear window sunshade, and four zone climate control.

Exterior color 2011 Jaguar XJ in each trim: XJ – 2 solid and 6 metallic exterior paint colors, or 5 special order metallic colors. XJL – 2 solid and 11 metallic exterior paint colors. XJ and XJL Supercharged – 2 solid and 11 metallic exterior paint colors. XJ and XJL Supersport – 2 solid and 12 metallic exterior paint colors, then there are also exclusive Spectrum Blue. Some of exterior colors: Polaris White, Ultimate Black Metallic, Crystal Blue Metallic, Claret Metallic, Ebony, Indigo Metallic, Vapour Grey Metallic, and still many other attractive selections

Jaguar XJ 2011 come with expensive starting MSRP price at: $72,700 – XJ, $79,700 – XJL, $87,700 – XJ Supercharged, $90,700 – XJL Supercharged, $110,200 – XJ Supersport, and $113,200 – XJL Supersport.

TORONTO, ON, OCT. 23, 2009 – Recently, at an event at a prominent Toronto venue, Muzik, Jaguar proudly revealed the All New 2011 Jaguar XJ to close to a thousand people. The iconic XJ offers a seductive mix of striking design and robust performance made possible by Jaguar's aerospace-inspired light weight aluminum body technology. The All New Jaguar XJ will go on sale with a starting price in Canada of $88,000 MSRP.

The All New Jaguar XJ brings new standards of sustainability to the luxury vehicle segment. Its lightweight aluminum structure makes it at least 136 kilograms lighter than its rivals, and is made with 50 percent recycled material allowing the XJ to minimize its carbon footprint and create a potential savings of three tons of CO2 per vehicle, compared to a body shell made entirely of new aluminum. These aerospace-inspired aluminum body technologies also provide benefits to performance, handling and fuel economy, while delivering increased strength, refinement and safety.

"The debut of our ultimate four-door flagship, the Jaguar XJ marks a major milestone for the company.  The new Jaguar XJ is truly beautiful, exhilarating to drive, and bold as it technologically meets the challenges of our fast-changing world," says Gary Moyer, president of Jaguar Land Rover Canada. "With sleek, sporting design and breathtaking performance, we're confident that our customers will be as excited as we are about the All New XJ and I think the tremendous turn-out at the launch event, shows that they in fact are as excited."

The first impression of the All New XJ is its visual assertiveness. The XJ’s flowing lines are complemented by a taut waistline, which further accentuates the impression of length and elegance, and creates a natural tension as it fades from the front arch into the middle section of the car before reappearing as a strong haunch towards the rear.

The New XJ offers a modern reinterpretation of a number of key XJ design cues while maintaining the highest standards of personal luxury. This is evident in how the strong, muscular lower half of the car contrasts with the slim and graceful quality of the roofline – a nod to the original 1968 XJ sedan.

A standard panoramic glass roof is an integral part of the All New XJ’s design, enabling the car to have a lower, more streamlined roofline, while dramatically enhancing the feeling of light and space inside. The LED light clusters wrap stylishly over the rear fenders, and feature three dramatic red vertical strips while the elongated teardrop shape of the side windows establishes the car’s silhouette. The rear of the All New XJ is notable for its pure, sculpted shape. With a conscious absence of ornamentation, the rear features only a single leaping Jaguar.

The face of the All New 2011 XJ is confident, with a wide front track and short overhang contributing to the finely judged proportions. The nose of the car follows Jaguar’s new design language with a bold and assertive treatment – the powerful mesh grille and slim xenon headlights create a strong road presence while the wrap-around rear screen reduces the visual weight of the pillars and gives the impression of an exotic "floating" roof.

The sleek design and refined luxury is continued inside the All New XJ by mixing newly advanced technologies and contemporary design to create an environment more akin to a state-of-the-art living space than a car cabin. The overriding impression from the interior is a sense of personal space that is enhanced by the clean, simple form of the leather-wrapped instrument panel sitting low across the vehicle. At the center of the instrument panel is an analog clock with individual chrome chaplets, a spun metal face and iridescent blue background; a look inspired by luxury watches.

The all new XJ's cabin is a marvel in its own right, blending elegant, contemporary design with the comfort, luxury and unmistakable sporting style of a Jaguar. Chrome and piano black detailing provide an eye-catching contrast to the beautifully crafted leather and veneer surfaces. To further complement the cabin design is a level of choice in colors, veneers and leathers not seen before in a Jaguar. Four specification levels – XJ, XJL, Supercharged and Supersport – allow the customer to tailor the car to suit their tastes. The top-of-the-range Supersport provides the ultimate expression of performance and luxury, with a specification that includes a leather headlining, semi-aniline leather seats and veneers with laser inlays.

Stunning, 12.3-inch high-definition Virtual InstrumentsTM complement an innovative 8-inch Touch-screen that displays vehicle functions ranging from audio and video to navigation and climate control. Premium surround sound options include the top-of-the-range 1200W Bowers & Wilkins system, which is standard on the Supercharged and Supersport models. Advanced infotainment features also include hard drive-based audio and navigation systems, and comprehensive connectivity for portable audio and video devices via the powerful Media Hub.

The All New XJ’s beauty is much more than skin-deep. All engines transmit power through an enhanced version of Jaguar’s acclaimed electronically controlled, six-speed automatic transmission which has a fully-adaptive shift system that delivers extremely smooth gear changes and works to balance performance and economy.

With the XJ, Jaguar has built upon its leading quality performance using the latest virtual product technologies. These proven Jaguar dynamic technologies are taken to new levels in the All New XJ. Features such as air suspension, Adaptive Dynamics (continuously variable damping), Active Differential Control (on Supercharged and Supersport) and quick-ratio power steering deliver the blend of responsive, dynamic handling and a refined, supple ride expected from a Jaguar.

The new XJ will be available in Canada with a choice of three engines – a 5.0 litre 385hp naturally aspirated V8, 5.0 litre 470hp supercharged V8 and a 5.0 litre 510hp supercharged V8. In naturally-aspirated form, the XJ develops 380 lb.-ft. of torque. The supercharged versions develop 424 lb.-ft. and 461 lb.-ft. of torque, respectively. All three engines combine deft performance, unparalleled character, peerless pedigree, and have a classic Jaguar blend of strength and precision.

The All New 2011 Jaguar XJ delivers a driving experience that is just as memorable as the car’s sleek and alluring appearance, combining responsive, sporting dynamics with the luxurious drive expected from a Jaguar.


The entry-level configuration comes with a naturally aspirated engine, which is also offered for $79,500 in XJL long-wheelbase guise. The XJ Supercharged carries a price of $87,500, and the XJL version adds $3,000 to the total, for a final price of $90,500. Lastly, the XJ Supersport and XJL Supersport models cost $112,000 and $115,000, respectively.

The tall front end, which no doubt was designed with European pedestrian safety standards in mind, is generally styled like the XF, although the grille juts out further from the fascia. From the side, the XJ takes a vastly different approach as the shape reaches the C-pillar, which does not sweep in the same vaguely Lexus style of the XF.

Out back, Lancia-esque tail lamps curve up the rear and the dramatically sloped rear window gives the car a four door coupe-style profile.

The XJ's interior has also been seriously re-worked. Taking little in the way of influence from the smaller XF, the new XJ features a unique, wrap-around dash, complete with plenty of wood and leather accents. A large LCD screen is front and center while rounded air vents give the XJ's cabin an air of sportiness.

A push button ignition and JaguarDrive Selector gear switch -- the same found in the XF -- bring the big cat up to speed with 21st century luxury motoring. Optional features include a 1,200-watt Bowers & Wilkins sound system, hard drive-based audio and navigation systems and connectivity for external audio and video devices.

Technical features of the new XJ include an air suspension, Jaguar's continuously variable damping Adaptive Dynamics system and Active Differential Control.

The XJ is offered in three separate trim levels -- XJ, Supercharged and Supersport -- with each model available in long-wheelbase form. The base XJ is powered by a 385 horsepower 5.0-liter V8 while the mid-level Supercharged model adds a supercharger to boost horsepower to 470.

The customer order only Supersport model sits atop the XJ hierarchy, powered by a 510 horsepower version of Jaguar's supercharged 5.0-liter V8. All XJ models use a six-speed automatic transmission.

No matter the trim level, the XJ promises to be one serious sports sedan. Thanks to its light-weight aluminum construction -- Jaguar says the XJ is at least 300 pounds lighter than the competition -- even the base model XJ can scoot from 0-60 in 5.4 seconds. That figure drops to just 4.9 seconds for the Supercharged model, with the range-topping Supersport model making the same sprint in 4.7 seconds.

The base XJ tops out at 121 mph while the supercharged models have free reign all the way up to 155 mph.

Although fuel economy is rarely a concern with a vehicle of the XJ's ilk, the big cat manages a respectable 19 mpg average in base guise and a decent 18 mpg in supercharged form.
Until recently, Jaguar products were like the permanent exhibits in the British Museum: identifiable and familiar bits of national heritage changing little over the decades. But the flagship 2011 Jaguar XJ sedan says good-bye to all that. The company's DNA remains within but it's a luxury sedan that looks forward, not back. With the XJ's introduction, the company's managing director, Mike Driscoll says, "Phase one of rebuilding Jaguar is complete." It's a phase you'll like, if you're in the market for a premium sedan.

When it debuted in the late 1960s, the XJ was viewed as a break with the past. The 2011 XJ is even more so. It arguably provides the best luxury/sporting balance in a segment dominated by impressive but cold German machines (Audi A8,BMW 7 Series,Mercedes-Benz S-Class) and Japan's more saccharine idea of luxury (Lexus LS 460). The XJ has all the contemporary technology you could want but it also has character, a vitally important trait in cars north of $70,000. From the curb, from behind the steering wheel and from the backseat, you understand what the XJ is and what it isn't, and that's a good thing.

There are a few stylistic flourishes inside and, most notably, outside that have been greeted with love-it or hate-it reactions. However, there is unlikely to be the same sort of polarization when it comes to driving and riding in the 2011 Jaguar XJ. It goes like a scalded cat but never leaves a scratch on comfort.

Jaguar's new 5.0-liter V8 is the beating heart of the company's American offerings. In the XJ, it's available in 385-horsepower (380 pound-feet of torque) normally aspirated form, or with a supercharger, producing 470 or 510 hp. The three engine ratings serve to distinguish the base XJ from the XJ Supercharged and special-order XJ Supersport models. All three are available in standard-wheelbase (SWB) or long-wheelbase (LWB, 5.3 inches longer) trim.

The big cat launches hard but with decided smoothness. There's little suspension squat, and shifts through all six of the automatic's gears come positively as the engine spins to its 6,000-rpm limit. Selecting the Dynamic mode (one of three driving modes along with standard and winter) advances throttle response and firms up the suspension, while the Sport selection allows for automanual paddle-shifting and holds the transmission in the selected gear. It's also how you'll sprint to 60 mph in 5.4 seconds in the standard XJ, 4.9 seconds in the Supercharged and 4.7 seconds in the Supersport, according to Jaguar's testing.

The 2011 Jaguar XJ's predominantly aluminum chassis is more rigid than the outgoing car, allowing engineers to tune the suspension for improved ride and handling. Though 265 pounds heavier overall than the old XJ, the new car remains significantly lighter than its rivals, allowing Jaguar to trumpet an efficiency and performance advantage it has enjoyed for years. Indeed, the SWB and LWB XJ achieve a combined 19 and 18 mpg, respectively, according to the EPA. The Supercharged and Supersport get a combined 17 mpg.

In the corners, the standard SWB Jaguar takes a set on turn-in and arcs through nicely. You do notice the sedan's 3,870-pound curb weight, but body motions are well-controlled whether in Dynamic or Standard modes. With its softer setting, the latter is actually more effective when the road surface is not smooth. Steering is more precise than some of the XJ's competitors and the wheel itself is right-sized and feels good in your palms. The XJ doesn't feel like a sports car, but its torque and handling allow the driver to hustle it quite readily.

The balance that the 2011 Jaguar XJ seeks to strike pits dynamic driving excitement against opulence. These are the eternal, and contradictory, goals sought by many automakers. Performance demands favorable power-to-weight and high damping rates. Premium comfort requires more suspension travel and more weight in sound insulation, electronics, labor-saving electric motors and advanced safety devices. Modern technology allows the XJ to marry the two goals more successfully than ever.

Indeed, despite its dynamic capabilities, long-distance touring is still the Jag's forte, with ride quality sufficient to keep your head and whatever newspaper you may be reading in the backseat moving imperceptibly. As important as anything are the seats. Several hours-long stints in the driver, front passenger and rear seats confirmed a key impression. So satisfactory is seat comfort that one simply forgets about it.

Having two feet in modernity means providing the XJ customer with the interface contemporary consumers take for granted. Advanced display technology and iPod-influenced ergonomics are manifested in the XJ's 12.3-inch high-definition Virtual Instruments, which complement an innovative, dual-view technology 8-inch touchscreen that can project DVD movies to the passenger while the driver views vehicle functions or follows satellite navigation. It all works in the brightest of sunshine and can be figured out with a bit of intuitive fiddling.

The touchscreen interface is effective but it invariably gets smeared with greasy fingerprints and requires a longer glance than simple dials. Steering-wheel-mounted controls and a few console buttons/dials help you quickly issue simple commands. While we think the rotary gearshift shared with the XF and the XK is novel, its operation requires some getting used to. More than once when backing up, we inadvertently shifted the transmission into Sport mode rather than drive. A careless twiddle of the knob can also shift the tranny into neutral.

The leather-wrapped dash is dominated by twin center air vents reminiscent of the twin afterburners of a Navy Tomcat fighter jet. Door accents (wood or carbon-fiber) are pleasant to view and impart a nouveau-chic ambience. Interior storage nooks are generally well-placed and ample enough. The 18.4-cubic-foot trunk will swallow two large bags side by side, and you never feel too close to your fellow occupants. Airlinerlike seatback tray tables in the LWB model give the 2011 Jaguar XJ a biz-jet feel. Overall interior visibility is effective, with the cockpit brightened by a panoramic glass roof. However, like so many modern vehicles, the XJ has vision-blocking A-pillars, which can make it tough to look through a corner
The 2011 XJ's exterior hasn't grown on everyone just yet. Airflow (the XJ is the most aerodynamic Jaguar ever, the company claims) and the application of computational fluid dynamics contributed to designer Ian Callum's shape that successfully blends muscularity with an elegant roof line. However, while the front of the XJ looks like a modern Jaguar, the rear seems vaguely French. It's a slightly confusing visual.

Jaguar's new flagship is beautifully built, though. Panel gaps and sheet metal profiles are tidy and light-catching. The interior is sophisticated, with a decided "money" feel about it and a Bowers & Wilkins sound system that does Beethoven proud. What the exterior and interior highlight most, however, is difference. The XJ is manifestly different from its predecessors and its rivals. Its distinctiveness is perhaps its most salient selling point.

High-end luxury sedan buyers want it both ways. They want to be noticed but they only want so much attention. The XJ will appeal on both fronts but add a third. It should attract independent thinkers, folks who want style with driving brio in a package that evokes greater warmth than most of its European rivals and greater dynamism than its Far East counterparts. For them, the 2011 Jaguar XJ is an appropriate vessel with which to say good-bye to all that
The XJ is a cab-rearward design and is incredibly riveting to stare at as it sits back on its haunches with as much cool as James Bond lighting a Chesterfield. In black, with the big-dish 20-inch wheels, the car is sinister enough to warrant its own RICO investigation.

Jaguar Cars managing director Mike O’Driscoll, who’s peddled more than his share of schlock over a 35-year career with the company, is smiling more lately. He says the mission was to recapture the uniqueness of the original 1968 XJ but in a modern form. They looked at the class stalwarts—the Mercedes-Benz S-class, the BMW 7-series, and the Audi A8—and the more driver-oriented oddballs, including the Maserati Quattroporte and Porsche Panamera, and decided to shoot for a middle ground. Passion—but with typical British reserve.

If you focus on those front three-quarter shots, you’ll wrongly dismiss the 2011 XJ as just an XF with a pituitary run amok. Skip down to the side and rear profiles to capture the XJ’s more exotic stance. The beltline is pulled way up, the side glass is pinched narrow, and the flowing taffy stretch of aluminum sheetmetal ends in a high, short trunk.

The C-pillars are clad in wonky glossy black panels that bridge the side glass with the backlight. Styling head Ian Callum—who gave us all of our current Jaguars and a few Aston Martins—demanded it and got his way. You don’t hear odes to the Jensen Interceptor very often, but Callum is fascinated with the way that car’s rear glass wrapped around the body sides to isolate the roof. He wanted to create an unbroken black band around the car’s cranium, like the Lone Ranger’s mask. On lighter colors the effect is more pronounced—and a little forced, frankly—but it’s definitely not something Jaguar’s competitors would ever do.
If there are shared bits with other Jaguars, you won’t find them without pulling up the carpet. Besides the extravagant exterior, the cabin is a fascinating departure for Jaguar. For one thing, unlike most previous XJs, the space is huge, especially in the stretched models. Resembling a California landslide, the dash seems to have sunk a few inches from the windshield, with a band of the requisite burled wood filling in the gap and reminding one of the prow of a handmade yacht. The dropped dash puts everything lower, making the cabin more intimate and deemphasizing the car’s size.

This is no Mayfair drawing room. In the dash center above the eight-inch touch screen, reminiscent of a Ferrari, large, leather-swathed fairings protrude with the giant eight-balls that serve as air vents. The gauges are digital graphic renderings of analog dials on a 12.3-inch thin-film-transistor (TFT) display. Jaguar has some useful fun with this. For example, the numbers immediately around the “needle” glow brighter in what the engineers call a “torch effect,” as though the needle were shining a spotlight on the dial. And the gauges turn red (red mist?) when you put the car in dynamic mode. However, there’s untapped potential here. Why not give the driver several gauge cluster designs to toggle among

This car isn't kidding. The dramatic new shape speaks of a shift in direction for the XJ nameplate; the driving experience follows up on the promise. It's true that the previous XJ had an aluminum body and roughly the same chassis architecture, so you could argue this is little more than a reskin and a repowering. But in the first few yards, you realize it represents a comprehensive rethink of what a large Jaguar luxury sedan should be.

It's shifting away from the S-Class or A8 or 7 Series. The XJ feels distinctly sportier. The ride is no longer the waft it was with the old XJ. The V-8 isn't intended to be silent. The steering is quick, the cornering agile. The design isn't meant to communicate formality or businesslike status: It's about panache and extroversion and a bit of fun. Just look at that interior. The most stylish cabin in the world today? I wouldn't disagree.

And as to the exterior: Well, as we drive through Paris, a city where people know about style, they stop and point and stare in amazement. Driving through the countryside north of that great city, where the traffic-free rural roads roads are alternately open and sweeping or twisty and bumpy, your reporter is continually amazed too-at the numbers being passed by the speedometer needle.

That is the achievement of the new XJ. Other big sedans use a wider array of active chassis technologies than the Jaguar does; it does without 4WD or 4WS or active steering or active anti-roll. But when the others hunker into their sport modes, they tend to lose fluency. They take every opportunity to remind you what a task it is to make an elephant dance. The XJ is different. It feels remarkably unflustered and natural.

It turns into curves with something approaching glee and stays remarkably flat both in roll and pitch. The steering is so progressive your confidence rapidly builds. Mid-corner bumps do nothing to upset the action. The deeply contoured seat communicates the car's surprisingly neutral balance. The adaptive dampers are so good they disguise their presence. Most traces of untoward waveforms, whether high-frequency wheelhop or low-frequency body float, are diminished to the point you just don't think about them. Jaguar engineers opted for coil springs at the front (the predecessor was air) for a more natural feel. For the same reason, they bolted the subframe to the body without bushings, though noise refinement is still first rate. At the back, air springs are retained to level the car when laden.

Have we gotten used to an exterior design that aroused initial controversy? Yes, in traffic it looks striking from all angles, novel from some, and beautiful from most -- and athletic, despite its size. Indeed, the increased front track over the outgoing car happened mainly because the designers wanted it. The chassis guys were happy, since it bestowed more grip and less roll. The body engineers had the smarts to deliver a bigger car with greater stiffness but no extra weight.
Jaguar xj 2011