2020 Jaguar XE long-term test review: report 4

Jaguar’s smallest saloon, the XE, has been updated for 2020. So, should you consider choosing it over its German rivals? We’ve added one to our long-term test fleet to find out...

LT Jaguar XE with Audi A4

The car Jaguar XE 2.0 D180 SE R-Dynamic AWD auto Run by Steve Huntingford, editor

Why it’s here To see if Jaguar’s recently refreshed executive car impresses or frustrates when you live with it every day

Needs to Combine fun handling with relaxing cruising manners and a prestige feel with low running costs

Miles 5024 List price £39,475 Target Price £36,693 Price as tested £47,410 Official economy 46.4mpg Test economy 39.8mpg 

16 March 2020 – Times are changing

For as long as I can remember, it’s felt like the cream of Jaguar’s engineers are assigned to suspension tuning, while the integration of the automatic gearboxes is left to the work experience student.

You see, it consistently creates cars that are huge fun in the corners without being overly firm the rest of the time. Yet those same cars are invariably slow to change down when you floor the accelerator, and overly keen to shift about the rest of the time, when the engine has more than enough torque in reserve.

LT Jaguar XE gearstick

Maybe there’s been a rethink, though, because my XE is the first mainstream Jag I’ve driven where it feels like the gearbox is working with the engine instead of doing its own thing.

And helpfully for Jaguar, it’s moving in the right direction at a time where others – most notable Audi and Volkswagen – are going the other way, with their auto gearboxes nowhere near as responsive as they used to be.

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