Jaguar XE saloon driving position
There’s plenty of adjustment to the steering wheel, and having an electrically adjusted backrest (electric adjustment of the entire seat is an option on lower-end versions and standard on high-spec ones) makes it easy to make small adjustments to the driving position.
The seat offers good side support to keep you in place through corners but not enough lower back support. Adjustable lumbar support is an option on all versions, but it requires the further addition of fully electric seat adjustment on SE, Prestige, Landmark and R-Sport trims, both of which add up to a four-figure sum.
A head-up display, which beams key information such as speed and the next sat-nav direction onto the windscreen directly in front of you, is an option that could be worth it for high-mileage drivers. And the dashboard is easy to get the hang of; the buttons are all simple to use and within reach.
Jaguar XE saloon visibility
The XE offers a good view of the road ahead; its pillars are no more obstructive than those of most rivals. The door mirrors are a decent size, too. Seeing straight out of the back isn’t so easy, though, due to a fairly narrow rear window and broad, swooping pillars. At least all models come with rear parking sensors.
Options include a heated windscreen that will clear condensation and ice much faster than the air vents, automatic parking (where the car steers for you) and blindspot monitoring. There’s also a reasonably priced parking pack that consists of front parking sensors and a rear-view camera.
Jaguar XE saloon infotainment
Every model is fitted with Jaguar’s 10.0in touchscreen infotainment system, featuring sat-nav. The system responds fairly quickly most of the time but has some illogical menus and small icons that are fiddly to hit on the move. Online connectivity is standard (although this requires a smartphone to be paired to the system), allowing the use of various apps, including music streaming, your calendar and email. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone mirroring are also now available. The system also has a dual-view feature that allows the driver and front passenger to view different functions from one another.
Bluetooth and audio streaming are also included across the range, as is a USB port, a DAB radio, audio controls on the steering wheel and voice control.
The standard six-speaker sound system on lower-end trims is one of the better standard set-ups in this class. The Meridian system (standard on Portfolio, Landmark and the 300 Sport and optional on other XEs) has 11 speakers and two subwoofers for outstanding sound quality, while an even more powerful 17-speaker surround-sound version is also available. Either is well worth considering if you’re a bit of an audiophile.
Jaguar XE saloon build quality
Interior quality isn’t something Jaguar has been famous for in recent years, and while the inside of the XE is okay, with some soft-touch materials in key places, it’s not great. Compared with even the cheaper Skoda Superb, there are parts – such as the brittle-feeling plastics around the centre console and the vinyl-wrapped dashboard – that feel a bit iffy. And next to the class-leading finish of the Audi A4, everything from the operation of the buttons to the chromed plastic highlights – those in the A4 are generally metal - make the XE feel some way behind.