It always feels special to drive a Jaguar, on any given day. There’s certain leverage in the name, a distinction in its logo, that just sets it apart from the competition. Yes, if feeling extra special is your thing, the Jaguar, certainly, will play that part. However, we recently drove a special edition version of the Jag’s top luxury sedan XJ, which blurred the lines between special and exclusive, in a good way.
The Jaguar XJ50 was launched to celebrate 50 years of the XJ being on sale globally. Over the years, the styling and powertrain have changed but the essence of the XJ still remains intact. It looks like a good honest car with an underline of menace, waiting to bring out its dark side. In that respect, the XJ50 fits the bill perfectly.
On the whole, it looks similar to the top-end XJ but gets subtle styling cues in and around the exterior and interiors to make distinguishable as the XJ50. There are XJ50 badges on the front fenders, boot lid, scuff plates, headrests and front armrest.
One badge that stands out though is the one placed right in the centre of the front dashboard, it reads ‘XJ50 Jaguar Coventry’. This goes a long way in making one feel like this is a rare car. Further adding to this is special feeling are the 19-inch alloy wheels, which are specific to the XJ50.
The engine isn’t really rare though. The XJ50 is powered by a 3.0-litre, V6 diesel engine which produces 306 PS of power and 689 Nm of torque. It comes mated to an 8-speed automatic gearbox.
Personally, I would have preferred the XJ model range coming with a petrol engine option as well. Another area where we feel the XJ could’ve been better is space. Although the snug feel can appeal to some, the 1.12 crore (ex-showroom) price tag can shake one out of their nostalgia.
Nevertheless, the turbocharged diesel engine provides quite the whack of torque and is smooth yet powerful. There is a slight diesel rumble at idle but it does not get unpleasant at any moment. One department where the XJ50 outperforms is the ride comfort. It is an absolute joy to be driven around in the XJ50!
On the handling front, the XJ50 is capable of high-speed manoeuvres with relative ease. However, all XJs sold in India are LWB and pushing a car that long does come with its limitations. Despite the size, the XJ50 is able to through its weight around without much fuss.
One aspect which is particularly addictive is the way the power is delivered in the XJ50. The XJ50 can do 250 km/hr and has a claimed 0-100 km/hr timing of just 6.2 seconds! For a car that weighs almost 2-tonnes, that’s quite remarkable.
To sum up, the XJ was already a rare, good looking, powerful and comfortable super-luxury saloon. With the XJ50, Jaguar pays tribute to one of its greatest cars of all time, which in itself, makes the XJ50 that much more unique.