2013 Jaguar XF Styling

9.0
Styling

The Jaguar XF is proof that retro is mostly a crutch. Ultra-modern, gorgeous, and more than a little extravagant, the XF looks like no Jag before it, and patently, doesn't need to.

There's more than a touch of Lexus or Audi in the way the XF slips through the air cleanly, but it's an instantly identifiable theme all the same--one that goes in lockstep with Jaguar's past without bowing down to it. It's more a visual onomatopoeia. It looks like its brand name incarnate, with a catlike stance and an intense pair of eyes set off by the mesh of its grille. Call it an affordable take on Aston Martin if you want, it's sophisticated from almost every angle. And it's only subtly changed up when the XF gets amped up into the XFR league--only some black mesh and grille trim, hood louvers, and some badging flags the 510-hp version for the faithful.

The Jaguar XF has beautiful lines and real luxury presence, and a glamorous cockpit with a
If possible, the XF's cabin delights drivers even more than the exterior. It seems to have been lifted from the front desk at a chic London hotel. There's aluminum and wood trim, to be sure—burl walnut trim is now standard—as well as a groovy puck-shaped shifter knob that rises to attention when the ignition button's pressed (and reminds us of high-end audio systems. At the same time, vents roll open to life, and ambient lighting begins to glow. Jaguar considers it the car's "heartbeat," and it's a clever wake-up call to the reinvigorated design all around.

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