New Model News

2021 Jaguar XF looks ready to go toe-to-toe with the Genesis G80 thanks to major upgrades

The Jaguar XF has been thoroughly redesigned for the 2021 model year.

Photo courtesy of Jaguar

Luxury midsize cars aren't hot sellers, but they are a big deal. Not only are they the leading faces of their brand, they set the technological precedent for what is to come in years down the line for other vehicles in the company's lineup. If the 2021 Jaguar XF is any indication, the future of the British automaker is looking good.

That starts at the front where the traditional Jaguar grille with a Noble Chrome finish is flanked by slim LED quad headlights with Double J Blade daytime running lights. It's wide but athletic and dynamic. Seven wheel designs are available.

Buyers can opt for a Black Exterior Pack to give the model bespoke Gloss Black elements including the grille mesh, grille surround, lower air intakes, rear valance finishers, and badging.

2021 Jaguar XF: Exterior

Photo courtesy of Jaguar

Rear-wheel drive is standard on all but the XF's highest trim level. Jaguar is making the XF in three different trim levels: XF P250 S RWD, P250 SE RWD, and P300 R-Dynamic SE AWD.

XF P250 models are powered by a 246-horsepower, turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that gets 296 pound-feet of torque. The top-tier P300 model has a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder that is tuned to achieve 296 horsepower. Both engines are paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission.

Jaguar has given the XF about the same horsepower for 2021 as it had in 2020 - at least for the P250 models. The company has changed out the available turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 for the upgraded 2.0-four cylinder and now the top-tier model gets about 84 less horsepower than before, putting it on the low end of what you can get in the segment.

JaguarDrive Control allows drivers to choose from Comfort, Eco, Rain-Ice-Snow, and Dynamic drive modes via a rotary dial, called the JaguarDrive Selector, on the center console. These drive modes regulate steering, transmission, and throttle response.

This XF is lightweight compared to its predecessor, with architecture that is made from recycled aluminum.

2021 Jaguar XF: Interior

Photo courtesy of Jaguar

Where both the Genesis G80 and Jaguar XF shine is inside. The XF takes the looks of the 2021 Jaguar F-Pace and translates them for sedan styling. It comes standard with an 11.4-inch centrally-mounted infotainment touch screen. Operating the screen is Jaguar Land Rover's Pivi Pro system, which allows for a simplified menu structure and new technology integration including over-the-air updates, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto.

Active noise monitoring keeps road and engine noise at bay while a 12-speaker Meridian sound system pumps up the jams. Active Key can be used to lock and unlock the vehicle without the need for a traditional key.

The look of the cabin is upcale thanks to purposeful choices of appointments - open-pore wood and aluminum. There's laser-etched speaker frets are finished in brushed nickel that is them lacquered. Metallic blades rise up on either side of the center console giving the most forward elements height as well as width.

Lighting gives the car new interior dimension with an upper strip of light encircling the front of the cabin. The overhead console and footwells also feature light, in a waterfall style.

Buyers can choose their interior color scheme from Ebony, Light Oyster, Caraway, Siena Tan (P300 only), and Mars Red (P300 only) options. Top P300 grade models come with contrast stitching, an Ebony headliner, and unique tread plates.

A host of driver assist technology is provided including Clear Exit Monitor, which alerts regarding an approaching bicycle or pedestrian, and standard 3D surround view camera.

The 2021 Jaguar XF goes on sale soon. Pricing will be announced closer to its on-sale date. The 2020 Jaguar XF starts at $51,100. Expect the new version to be around the same price.

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What was your best car-related experience this year?

Chris Teague

This year has been a lot of things, but it hasn't been boring. Even if we focus only on the car world, there's plenty to talk about, from microchip-related new vehicle shortages to the wave of new electric vehicles hitting the market. That leaves us with a question for all of you: What was the best or most memorable car moment for you in 2021? I'll get the conversation started.

Porsche Cayenne GTS My SoCal Cayenne śaw snow for the first time in its nearly 200k-mile life last week.Chris Teague

I'd spent a good portion of 2021 wanting a new-old car to drive when I wasn't testing a new vehicle. That's harder than you'd think for someone who thinks, talks, and writes about cars all day, because there are so many interesting, risky, and downright funky options out there in every price range. The added headache for me was that I'd chosen to shop for a "fun" car in one of the most volatile car markets ever seen. Even the extremely high-mileage "untouchable" European cars I wanted to buy were commanding ridiculous prices.

After a solid few months of waffling between various rattletrap Mercedes-AMG, BMW M, and Audi S/RS cars, I landed on an option that had escaped me before: The Porsche Cayenne. First-generation Cayennes are a real bargain now, but the 955/957 (Porsche's internal code for the SUVs) can experience major problems that occur with or without regular maintenance and care. I was determined to buy one, and wasn't overly concerned about mileage, as long as I could count the number of owners on one hand. There was a beautiful 2009 Cayenne GTS with 90,000 miles but nine owners, a gorgeous 2004 Cayenne Turbo with a concerning engine tick, and many more just like them. Finally, I decided to risky-click a 196,000-mile Cayenne GTS in Southern California. It had one owner and one dealer-owner for a month or two prior to sale, its condition looked decent in photos, and I was able to negotiate a reasonable enough price that shipping it from San Diego to Maine wasn't a huge problem.

Porsche Cayenne GTS The pics look great, but hands-on tells another story.Chris Teague

I had two traveling Euro mechanics check the car out, and both confirmed that it was well-worn but mechanically sound, so I jumped. Ten days later, on a snowy, icy, dark Maine afternoon, the Cayenne arrived. Cosmetically, there were a few things the dealer and mechanics failed to mention, but overall, it looked good. The SUV passed Maine safety and emissions testing without problem, got a new set of Michelins, and I was on my way.

Porsche Cayenne GTS I'm in danger, but thankfully this should be a reasonable fix.Chris Teague

A few days of driving revealed what I was really in for. A check engine light revealed a camshaft position sensor error and the Cayenne displayed a nasty vibration at idle. A new sensor and motor mounts, and I'm on my way. I'll update you as more things break or miraculously work, but I want to hear your memories from 2021.

Email me at chris@automotivemap.com, and I will compile the best and most interesting stories for a story on New Year's Day. May you all have a wonderful 2022.

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Special edition Land Rover

Special Land Rover Defender stars in new James Bond film

The special Defender features several 007-inspired touches.

Land Rover

James Bond and British vehicles go together like bread and butter. The spy's most well-known rides come from Aston Martin, but Land Rover isn't sitting out on the action. The 25th film in the Bond series, No Time To Die, premiers in just a few weeks, and with it, a new special edition Land Rover Defender. Land Rover's SV Bespoke division created the special Defender, which in addition to making an appearance on the silver screen, will be on sale for a limited run to 300 lucky Bond fans willing to shell out the cash.


2022 Land Rover Defender V8 Bond Edition The Defender gets exclusive infotainment animations.Land Rover


The villainous Defender is powered by a supercharged 5.0-liter V8 that produces 518 horsepower and 461 pound-feet of torque. An eight-speed automatic transmission is standard, and Land Rover says the powertrain is strong enough to push the hefty off-roader to 60 mph from a stop in just 5.1 seconds. The V8 is a recent addition to the Defender line, and comes paired here with unique suspension and transmission tuning, bespoke spring and damper rates, and a new electronic active rear differential.



2022 Land Rover Defender V8 Bond Edition The 007 Defender V8 get special puddle lights.Land Rover


Unique touches to the 007 Defender include "Defender 007" treadplates, special infotainment animations, and "007" exterior puddle lamps. The interior will get a laser-etched detail plate to denote its number among the 300 vehicles. No Time To Die will feature the Defender front and center, but it's not the only Land Rover in the film. Two Range Rover Sport SVR SUVs will also make an appearance, along with a Range Rover Classic and a Land Rover Series III.


2022 Land Rover Defender V8 Bond Edition You'll need to be really into Bond to truly appreciate the special Defender.Land Rover


If you're more interested in seeing the Defender's time on screen than you are in getting behind the wheel, it hits theaters in the U.S. starting on October 8, 2021. The film will be the fifth and final movie to feature Daniel Craig as Bond. However, if you're really excited about the Defender, get ready to pay up. Prices start at $114,600 and supplies are extremely limited.

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