Jaguar XF Sportbrake estate unveiled

Jaguar XF Sportbrake estate unveiled

Priced from £34,910, the new estate is 6mm shorter than the previous XF Sportbrake but with a wheelbase that's 51mm longer, bringing increased interior room.

At yesterday's event two-time Wimbledon champ Andy pulled off the covers from the £35,000 auto before placing his precious Wimbledon trophy inside and sending it on a UK-wide tour, hoping to inspire the next generation of players.

Taking the BMW 5 Series Touring and Mercedes E-Class Wagon as its benchmarks, the Sportbrake is aiming to serve up a driving experience that aces the former with levels of comfort and practicality that match the latter.

While such cars are popular and considered "the sporty one" in Europe, the XF Sportbrake will compete in the USA for a small but loyal group of European luxury wagon fans; rivals include the Volvo V90 and V60, BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz E Class. The modern, gorgeous shooting brake design gets a prominent-yet-elegant horizontal chrome piece that integrates seamlessly with the car's white reverse lights.

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Use of lighter materials such as aluminum cuts fuel consumption and Carbon dioxide emissions, and ultimately running costs - the new XF sedan past year cut 198 kilograms over the previous model, and the new Sportbrake tips the scales at a relatively lithe 1,660 kg. This gives the auto a sense of speed and a very dynamic appearance. "As a result, I think it looks just as sporty as the sedan, if not more so".

Innovations inside include an intuitive gesture-controlled sunblind for the Sportbrake's super-sized, full-length, panoramic roof, Driver Condition Monitoring to detect signs of tiredness after an active day and a waterproof Activity Key you can wear while playing sport. Customers can also specify Cabin Air Ionization, which purifies air to provide protection against environmental pollution.

Up front, there's a 10-inch Touch Pro infotainment system, which Jaguar calls "your on-board digital butler". This drops to 20 cubic feet when the rear seats are required.

Jaguar says the suspension has been specially tuned for use in a wagon, while retaining the sedan's handling dynamics, and offers user-selectable settings and a self-leveling rear end. The automaker will offer a range of gas and diesel four-cylinder motors worldwide, but the American XF S Sportbrake will only be available with Jaguar's 380 horsepower 3.0-liter supercharged V6. All the versions will be mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission.

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