Last year’s class winner is still one of our favourite cars in 2009. Everything about towing with a Jaguar XJ feels so effortless. The 2.7-litre diesel may not be as powerful as the 3.0-litre in the Jag XF, but with 321lb.ft of torque to call upon, it’s never short of get-up-and-go.
The chassis is a perfect match for the engine. No other car blends comfort and control quite so well, smoothing every bump but tackling the lane-change manoeuvre with the poise of a sports car.
Rear-seat space is modest for a luxury car. Even in the front the XJ feels cosy compared with Jag’s newer XF. Yet there is something appealing about the mix of traditional design and modern technology in the cabin. The XJ swallows almost a full load of holiday luggage, too.
The XJ is due to be replaced, so we can’t recommend it wholeheartedly this year. However, epic discounts may help you take the plunge.