New Jaguar XF Sportbrake vs BMW 5 Series Touring

Both of these new estates are sporty, practical, fitted with a diesel engine and four-wheel drive, and cost around £41k. But which is better?...

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What Car? team
24 Mar 2017 08:00 | Last updated: 14 Jun 2018 00:03

Behind the wheel

Driving position, visibility, build quality

​You’ll be able to get comfortable fairly easily in the driver’s seat of either car, thanks to a wide range of adjustment for both the steering wheels and seats. Electric seat height adjustment is standard on both, but fully electric seats cost extra, as does adjustable lumbar support. The latter is an option well worth considering for long-distance comfort.

Visibility is excellent, helped in the dark by some impressive standard headlights. The XF has xenon headlights and LED daytime running lights, while the 5 Series has sharper full LED units. Upgrading the XF to LED headlights (that also turn with the steering wheel and provide automatic high-beam assist) costs £1275. Adding turning headlights and high-beam assist to the 5 Series costs £1295.

New Jaguar XF Sportbrake vs BMW 5 Series Touring

Unfortunately, neither car gets a reversing camera as standard, but self-parking systems with 360deg cameras are available for £1095 in the 5 Series and £1690 in the XF.

The 5 Series is in a different league to the XF in terms of interior quality. The finish on its dashboard is plusher and more upmarket, and the way the dials and buttons operate makes the 5 Series feel like a Swiss timepiece to the XF’s 1980s Casio watch.