The hills are alive with the sound of.. XFR-S (w/VIDEO)

It’s the fastest, most powerful and agile sports saloon Jaguar has ever built – and it goes on sale in May 2013 priced at £79,995.

Developed by Jaguar Land Rover’s specialist ETO division, the XFR-S features the same bespoke powertrain as the XKR-S, plus a series of chassis and body enhancements which enable it to drive like no other Jaguar saloon before.

Applying learning from the new F-TYPE, the response to throttle inputs has been made significantly quicker. The end result is a more intimate connection between the driver’s right foot and the engine.

Jaguar XFR S Official G8 The hills are alive with the sound of.. XFR S (w/VIDEO)

And what an engine it is. The 542bhp supercharged 5.0-litre V8 engine with 502lb-ft (680Nm) of torque propels the XFR-S to 60mph in 4.4 seconds before reaching an electronically limited top speed of 186mph (300 km/h). Power is transferred via an eight-speed transmission with ‘Quickshift’ functionality, together with recalibrated electronic active differential and Dynamic Stability Control systems.

As with the XKRS-S, power and torque has been increased by 39bhp and 41lb-ft (55Nm) over the XFR, while maintaining the same fuel consumption and emissions figures.

Jaguar has worked hard to improve the XFR’s sporting performance while maintaining the ride and comfort expected by customers. Front and rear suspension upgrades have increased lateral stiffness by up by 30%, while wider 20-inch ‘Varuna’ forged alloy wheels are shod with bespoke tyres to maximise the chassis’ grip.

Jaguar XFR S Official G14 999x472 The hills are alive with the sound of.. XFR S (w/VIDEO)

A number of key driveline components have been uprated in order to adapt the XFR-S for the greater power and torque outputs and stiffen the entire drivetrain to make its responses more immediate; these include uprated driveshafts, a larger central bearing on the propshaft and a new torque convertor.

Revisions to both spring rates and the adaptive damper settings increase confidence at speed while delivering a supple, controlled ride.

But the most obvious changes have been made to the XFR-S’ exterior – not all of them for the better. Deeper sills and unique ‘aero-blades’ ensure a clean passage of air along the side of the car and on to the deeper rear bumper sides, while a carbon fibre rear diffuser between the signature quad tailpipes extends underneath the rear of the XFR-S to reduce lift.

Jaguar XFR S Official G19 The hills are alive with the sound of.. XFR S (w/VIDEO)

But a most un-Jaguar-like rear spoiler, does literally spoil the XF’s flowing shape, reducing overall lift by 68% and the sports saloon’s street-cred by a similar amount. Two designs of spoiler are available, so hopefully there’s a more subtle alternative to the fast-and-furious tuner special we see in Jaguar’s press shots.

Otherwise airflow has been carefully optimised at the front-end to enable the XFR-S to cleanly cleave the air and channel its contents to the engine, brakes and generate the right balance of downforce with minimal drag. The resulting shape is assertive and very distinctive, from its deeper front bumper with larger air intakes, to its carbon fibre front splitter with vertical vanes. The styling of the XFR-S makes it obvious that it’s a car that means business.

Which is perhaps part of the problem. Jaguar has always been the quintessential ‘iron fist in velvet glove’ of the performance car market, where an AMG Mercedes of BMW M car might look brash. I’m not sure I welcome the tables being turned, but perhaps my opinion will change once I see it in a different colour with a less ‘horny’ spoiler.

Jaguar XFR S Official G2 The hills are alive with the sound of.. XFR S (w/VIDEO)

The XFR-S is available to order now, with first deliveries in May 2013. Priced at £79,995, the XFR-S is £6,930 more than the 552bhp BMW M5 and £14,600 more than the 503bhp XFR.

Key Details  

 

XFR-S

Engine

5.0-litre V8 supercharged petrol

Capacity (cc)

5000

Bore/Stroke (mm)

92.5/93

Peak Power (PS@rpm)

550@6500

Peak Power (kW@rpm)

405@6500

Peak Torque
(lb/ft @rpm)

502@2500-5500

Peak Torque (Nm@rpm)

680@2500-5500

Transmission

Eight-speed ‘Quickshift’ automatic

Intelligent Stop/Start

Yes

0-60mph (secs)

4.4

0-100km/h (secs)

4.6

Top Speed (mph | km/h)

186 | 300 (electronically limited)

Combined Economy

(EU mpg | l/100km | US mpg)

24.4|11.6 | 18

CO2 Emissions (g/km)

270

Gallery