7 Mar 2013

Is the Jaguar XFR-S too expensive?

Matt Hubbard wonders if Jaguar have set the £80,000 price of the forthcoming XFR-S too high

I put out a tweet the other day.  It said, "Your budget is £80,000. What would you buy? Mercedes CLS AMG or Jaguar XFR-S? FIGHT!"

Of the twenty or so responses the vast majority said CLS.  A few said something different altogether.  None said XFR-S.  This is puzzling.  Most people thought the CLS AMG gets Mercedes' incredible 6.2 litre V8 when in fact it now comes with the 5.5 litre twin turbo V8.  But, when they found out, that didn't dent their resolve.

@TurningForce hit the nail on the head when I suggested the C 63 AMG, rather than the CLS ought to be the XFR-S' competitor, with, "if I was to class match it to a Merc it would be the E63 cause the C isnt quite in the same league as the XF in normal spec"

The Jaguar XFR-S will cost £80,000.  The Mercedes C 63 AMG costs £56,000, the E 63 AMG costs £75,000, the CLS 63 AMG costs £82,000.  In BMW's corner the M5 costs £73,000 and for Audi the RS6 will cost £77,000.  Finally, the Jaguar XFR costs £65,000.

All the above have broadly similar performance with the exception of the RS6.  All accelerate to 60mph in roughly 4.5 seconds (RS6 does 0-62mph in 3.9).  All have limited top speeds.  All have four seats.  All are saloons except the RS6 which is estate only.

The XFR-S will be a fine car.  The XF looks fantastic in standard form and exquisite in XFR-S guise, it drives as well as any Mercedes and now Mercedes have lost the 6.2 V8 the Jaguar engine sounds better.  At idle the Mercedes 5.5 V8 sounds like a diesel.  At any speed the M5 plays fake engine sounds through the stereo.  The supercharged 5 litre V8 in the XFR-S sounds like exploding boxes of TNT in the back seat.  I know, I've driven the XKR-S.

But people, petrolheads, love the CLS which is the XFR-S' direct rival in price terms.  £80,000 is too high against this competition no matter how good the XFR-S is.  

If Jaguar was to price the XFR-S at £75,000 it would be £10,000 more than the XFR, and crucially a direct match for the E 63 AMG and M5 - with which it would bring a decent fight.  And it would sound better than the pair of them.

Do you think the XFR-S is a match for the CLS 63 AMG or have Jaguar set the price too high?