Jaguar XF – SV8 Review

Jaguar XF - SV8

Jaguar released the XF model to replace the aging S-type body which is Jaguar’s mid-sized sedan. The XF was released in 2008 with the SV8 being the range topping supercharged v8 Jag. In 2009, the XF-R was released which then became the top model in the XF line-up. The SV8 was basically a filler until the XFR was released/finalised.

The Jaguar SV8 has a 306kW (416hp) supercharged engine with 560Nm (@3500rpm) of torque.  The official figures for the sprint from 0-100 km/h (0-62 m/h) is 5.4 seconds! Which isn’t so bad for a car that weighs in at nearly 1850kg and can seat 5 people. The SV8 has an adaptive suspension system, smartly called “CATS” or Computer Active Technology Suspension. This give the car a comfy ride on most surfaces, although the large 20″ wheels seems to counteract the suspensions efforts. Put the car in “S” or Sport mode and engage  dynamic mode and the suspension stiffens and the gears start shifting later and you can really hear the v8 roar.


Jaguar XF – SV8

Overall the car is very comfy, but there are few things to take note of.  Firstly, the car is a big v8 with a supercharger, so the fuel economy is not ideal for a daily driver in the city.  Official specs rate the car with a fuel economy of 18.7L/100km with urban/city driving, 9.6 L/100km with country/highway driving and a combined fuel economy of 12.6L/100km.  My mixed driving with highway and urban (mostly slower urban as I travel during peak hours) gives me on average about 15.8L/100km. The fuel tank has a capacity of 70L and so you can get anywhere between 374 and 769 km from you full tank depending on the kind of driving you do and where your driving.  Secondly, the visibility out of the A-pillar (the pillar where the side mirrors are attached) give poor visibility, especially when going around corners.  One thing to note is that the big v8 loves going on longer drives with speeds of 100km/h to 110km/h (maximum state speed limit where we live). It really stretches its legs and cruises on 6th gear with no fuss. Given the chance, it will roar to life when overtaking and purrs along nice and quietly for a quiet and smooth ride.

The sound system sounds good but for the price of the car we expected it to be a little crisper sounding and have more bass! We have had issues with the USB port (located in the centre console) and also be careful not to leave your USB drive in the port overnight as it drains the cars battery even when off! The 6-stacker in build CD player works well and can handle MP3’s with ease. The Bluetooth system is good enough and paired easily with an iPhone (both 4S and 6Plus). It does not stream music from the phone (although I believe this was upgraded in the 2012 onwards models as they have the hdd based entertainment systems). The GPS works well enough, even in CBD driving with taller building can block signals. Jaguar have also implemented their own voice controls for the car but we have never used this feature.

The back seat can fit 3 adults with a bit of squeezing or 2 adults and one child well or even 3 children very comfortably! Rear legroom is okay, depending on how far back the front occupants put their seat back. Luggage capacity of the boot is around 540 Litres or 17 cubic feet. Which is a decent amount and can fit two medium to large sized suitcases. Although it worth noting that the boot is very deep and can be hard to take shopping out from the very back of the boot.

Overall the Jaguar SV8 is a brilliant car. It handles well, drives smoothly and comfortably. It still gets stares from people wondering what car it is as it has a great presence on the road (when clean!) and will knock you back into your seat if you put your foot down. Not bad for a car from 2008!

-Random Reviews Team-

Long Term Review:
The car is great, although there have been a few issues being an older car. First off the wheels scratch very…very easily and are not easy to get fixed. The car itself has had some battery module issues, which were resolved recently and has since been okay. Although with the faulty battery module, it meant the full car was acting like it was tripping very erratically. Another thing to note is that being the big V8, the fuel economy is not too great. As of late I have been averaging over 16L/100km on mixed use (highway and peak hour traffic). The brake pads have worn out a lot sooner than expected and the 20″ wheels are not cheap to replace! Having two different sizes (wider on the back than the front) means that you cannot rotate the tyres when servicing but only check for wear and balance.

Its not all doom and gloom. The car still runs great (with 6month servicing – although I do more than 5,000km/6months), it is very comfortable and still turns heads around town. The V8 power is still fun and really brightens up your day :)

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