A delight, thanks to mighty engines and poised body control
Slim seats with plenty of adjustment; narrow rear window compromises visibility
Strong showing here, including a pop-up bonnet to help protect pedestrians
Jaguar now has a good reputation for reliability
Rear seats next to useless; shallow boot is easily accessed via hatchback opening
Heated leather seats, sat-nav, Bluetooth and climate control are standard
Under the XK's bonnet lurks a 5.0-litre engine which even in its most basic form has 380bhp, making it seriously powerful; in fact, even with this engine the car is so fast and agile that we reckon there's not much point in spending considerably more on one of the supercharged 'R' versions, including the XKR-S which will shoot you from 0-60mph in just 4.6 seconds. Losing the roof naturally reduces some of the body's stiffness but generally the XK's agility belies the car's size. All versions feel a little skittery over scarred road surfaces but only the XKR-S feels overly firm at higher speeds. The engines growl suitably while accelerating and quieten nicely for cruising.
The seats can be precision-tuned with electric adjustment but are definitely better suited to slim frames. A touch-screen console reduces dash clutter but isn't the easiest to use. Two adults will be able to get comfortable in the front but the rear seats are bizarrely shaped and unsuitable for anything other than a few extra bags. Loading the long, shallow boot is made easier by the hatchback opening rather than saloon-style tailgate.
Although some of the materials don't feel as expensive as the price tag would suggest, we don't expect reliability to be an issue. Jaguar was the top-rated manufacturer in the 2013 JD Power customer satisfaction survey, too. Safety kit is as good as we'd expect, with a pop-up bonnet to help protect pedestrians in the event of an impact.
If your financial advisor suggests the XK as a sound investment, don't listen. Not only is it fantastically expensive to buy, but you can also give up any hope of seeing very much of its value back after three years. Quenching that 5.0-litre engine's thirst is also going to sting, too. If you buy the cheapest model we'd suggest adding the active suspension system, but this pushes up the price.