Jaguar XKR Supercharged

Nathan discovers that a rapid big cat coupe is becoming a highly tempting supercar chaser…

Cost New £86,400 Price £34,670

T

he Jaguar XKR is maturing into a properly covetable 2000s Grand Tourer. Good cars don't stick around for long, and there's an XK for all – from refined cruiser to supercar-rivalling sledgehammer. This particular XK is firmly towards the latter. It looks absolutely stunning in white, and the initial impressions are backed up when you get up close to the paintwork. We struggled to find any blemishes across the entire bod, with only a light smattering of stonechips on the snout plus a couple of minor scuff marks on the passenger door and flanks.

The alloy wheels are in perfect condition, and they wear Dunlop SP Sport Maxx rears and Triangle fronts, all with an excellent level of tread left.

The interior is in just as good nick, with only a light amount of wear to be found on the driver's seat bolster. Everything else is perfect, with no wear to the control surfaces, no manky soft-touch surfaces you might find in other luxury cars and all the toys work as they should. It's very hard to see how this is six years old, such is its quality.

The mechanicals look in good order too; clean and tidy, with all the fluids up to their correct marks. The service history provides further reassurance, with yearly stamps at Jaguar main dealers up to 2016.

Talking of encouragement, there's little needed to fire up the 5.0-litre V8. It blows away all notions of old Jaguar stereotypes – no whiffy pub landlords here, just a baritone V8 throb that wobbles reality and delights the ears. Prod the accelerator and this growling wonder leaps forward with the sharp enthusiasm of a fully-lit TVR. The steering is light, but it's accurate, and it firms up under pressure. The chassis is playful – if that's your thing – and the brakes are sharp yet reassuringly predictable.

We didn't experience any peculiar rattles or noises during our test, and the suspension and drivetrain didn't exhibit any running issues. All the temperatures stayed where they were supposed to be, too. This XKR is a great example of the breed and though its hue might be divisive, the driving experience is fantastic. If you've ever fancied dipping your toe into XK ownership, this represents a fine choice.

With a decent history and just over 44,000 miles on the clock to back up this car’s superb (near new) condition it was hard to give back the keys. This Senator really needs to be seen to be believed.

Jaguar XKR Supercharged

Year:     2012
Mileage:     19,750
On sale at:     Centurian Automotive
www.centurianauto.co.uk

Specifications
Engine:     5000cc, 8-cyl, DOHC
Transmission:     RWD, 5-speed manual
Power:     503bhp@6500rpm
Torque:     461lb-ft@5500rpm
Weight:     1753kg

Performance
0-60mph:    4.2sec
Top speed:     155mph
Economy:     23mpg

Choose your XKR (X150) Facelift

The facelift XKR X150 was launched in 2011, spearheaded by the new 542bhp XKR-S.

The 2012 XK Artisan SE features special leather trim, a Bowers & Wilkins sound system and a choice of three body colours. You also get unique treadplates, 16-way adjustable, heated seats and 20in alloy wheels.

XKR-S GT appears in 2013, with a six-speed transmission, active E-diff, bespoke bodykit, wider front track, faster steering rack, adjustable dampers and increased springing rates. It also has carbon ceramic brakes. Of the 40 built, 10 come to the UK.

Production comes to an end in 2014 with no replacement.