The XJ Series is Jaguars larger, more expensive line of sedans, rivaling the BMW 7 Series, Mercedes-Benz S-Class and other high-end models in price and prestige.
For 2001, the XJ range gets several new standard features, including two shared with other Jaguar models: reverse parking control and free scheduled maintenance for the four-year/50,000-mile warranty period. With reverse parking control, sensors in the rear bumper detect when the car is close to hitting another object and an audible warning sounds.
The rear-drive XJ Series comes in two sizes, both with the same styling marked by a long, low profile, four round headlights and the signature Jaguar grille. The base XJ8 and XJR models ride a 113-inch wheelbase and are 198 inches long. The wheelbase and overall length are stretched 4.9 inches on the XJ8 L and Vanden Plas models.
All models have high-grade leather, generous amounts of wood trim, and a full load of comfort and convenience features. Most of the extra 4.9 inches on long-wheelbase models shows up in the rear seat, which is huge compared to the standard-size XJs. Adults have room to cross their legs, and the wider rear doors improve entry and exit.
Cargo volume, however, is a skimpy 13 cubic feet on all models. The trunk has too little room fore and aft to carry anything sizable.
Under the Hood
All versions come with Jaguars 4.0-liter V-8 engine and a five-speed automatic transmission. On the XJ8, XJ8 L and Vanden Plas models, horsepower is 290. On the sporty XJR and Vanden Plas Supercharged models, horsepower jumps to 370 from the addition of a supercharger.
Traction control and antilock brakes are standard on all models.