Judged purely on its towing ability, each and every one of our drivers had the Jaguar XF at the top of the 1550-1699kg weight class. It really is that good.
We’ve enjoyed towing with the previous XF, but the new model is even better. The 180PS (178bhp) version of the new Ingenium diesel engine delivers much improved fuel economy and emissions, but without compromising on performance. Pulling a tourer weighted to 85% of its kerbweight, the Jag accelerated from 30-60mph in 11.8 seconds.
Data from the Al-Ko ATC system showed stability to be beyond reproach, both at speed and in emergency manoeuvres. Very few cars come close to the Jaguar’s unperturbed towing manners at 70mph, and in the lane-change the XF completed the test at ever faster speeds without any pushing or pulling from the caravan – the Jag made our most dramatic and violent test seem almost pedestrian.
The hill-start was just as straightforward. In wet and dry weather, the Jag pulled easily to the top of the slope, and reversed on the far side without any problem.
Like the smaller XE from the class below, the XF continues to impress once the caravan or trailer has been unhitched. It corners beautifully, with direct and accurate steering. But while the smaller Jag has an over-firm ride, the XF rewards the driver without compromising comfort.
Inside, the XF may not match some German executive saloons for fit and finish, but the interior design is attractive and sporty, with a very good driving position. There’s decent space in the back, too.
If you don’t think saloons make practical tow cars, the XF could be the car to change your mind. Our testers found room for a full load of holiday luggage in the boot. Other towing-friendly features include a clear reversing camera and trailer stability control to help combat snaking.
Upmarket saloons like the Jag aren’t cheap, but in Prestige spec the XF is decent value. What Car?’s research suggests Jaguar dealers are prepared to offer healthy discounts on the list price, too.