Give the chauffeur the day off

* Brilliant drive with luxury * Rear feels too dark, though * On sale now, from 53,775...

Give the chauffeur the day off

Up front, Jaguar has chosen a somewhat eclectic mix of styles; with elements inspired by a bygone era sitting cheek-by-jowl with the latest technical advancements.

Obviously, all the features youd expect in a traditional Jag are present and correct; fat, comfy leather-clad seats and door cappings trimmed with ever so slightly wiggly stitching hint at a hand-built quality, while deep veneers, ebony and chrome detailing, bulls-eye air vents and even an analogue oval clock punch home the old-money message.

These traditional ingredients are complimented by Jaguars signature rising rotary gear selector, a touch-screen command centre and a virtual instrumentation binnacle that features three floating circular displays.

These displays are extremely trick, because theyre not only able to change colour, but their functionality, too. For example, select Sport mode and the left-hand dial stops delivering sat-nav directions and instead turns red and displays whichever gear youre in as you use the steering wheel mounted gearshift paddles.

To experience the XJ at its most beguiling, you need to head out into the night. With crystal clear tunes pulsing from the ultra-powerful optional Bowers and Wilkins stereo, and sexy phosphor blue mood lighting reflecting demurely off myriad burnished surfaces, its akin to piloting your own high-class chill-out lounge.

Unquestionably, youll be chilled and thrilled in equal measure every time you drive the XJ.