Warren Brown Rips Jaguar XJR a New You-Know-What

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago

Washington Post columnist Warren Brown doesn't have very much nice to say about the new Jaguar XJR. (Sit over here, Warren.) He reckons the model's lower-priced competition taunts it with an automotive rendition of "Anything you can do, I can do better:" "Where is the prestige in the XJR Supercharged sedan's 400-horsepower V-8 engine in a world where 200-horsepower engines for pitifully ordinary cars are the norm, and where anyone who can spend $30,000 can get a big 5.7-liter, 340-horsepower Dodge Hemi V-8 that would give any Jaguar a run for its money?" After dissing the Jag's sat nav and safety as pedestrian, Warren pronounces a paradigm shift. Apparently luxury car buyers are moving away from "excessive horsepower" towards cars that "show the world they are committed to clean and green living." After a huge metaphorical sigh, the self-pronounced old-fashioned snob writes the ungreen luxury car a fitting, politically correct epitaph: "Those days have disappeared — effectively erased by technology that has empowered the masses, and made irrelevant by a rapidly growing global appetite for oil, a natural resource that is getting more difficult to develop. In that world, the high-end Jaguar has become a dinosaur."

Robert Farago
Robert Farago

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  • Nick Nick on Aug 04, 2007

    Jag enjoyed a brief flurry of popularity after they launched the new XK8. It seemed to capture at least some of the elegance of the old E-type. However, it was none too fast at a time when the performance ante was getting upped with every new model and was also somewhat cramped. That seems to have been their last hurrah. The recent updating of that model seems to have been somewhat successful (i.e., they didn't ruin it) but looks so similar to most people they may as well not have bothered. And the sedan got a refresh that made it look....just like it did before. What is killing Jaguar though (well, apart from absentee landlord Ford) is they have no visibility in the market at all. I honestly don't hear their name mentioned in any conversation I have, even with car people. They get a token review now and then, and settle back into obscurity.

  • Sherman Lin Sherman Lin on Aug 05, 2007

    kjc117: "Chuck, your a Jaghead would you still be one if Ford sold them to an Indian or Chinese company?...Jag needs to die unless someone like the Aston Martin group can purchase them to restore their pride. NOT some other auto. company just have them rebadged lineup" True an Indian or Chinese auto company could never do proper job with Jaguar. That would be like a Japanese or Korean company building better cars than GM or Ford.

  • Mirko Reinhardt Mirko Reinhardt on Aug 05, 2007

    So... what's the problem with the XJR? It has retro styling, but is built on an aluminium space frame and is by a huge margin the lightest car of it's class - making it quicker and more economical than similarly powered competitors. Sounds like a good idea to me?

  • Dolo54 Dolo54 on Aug 05, 2007

    I think the article makes a good point. All he's saying is that times have changed. Jaguar's business model is old-school and there's no market for it anymore. I think Jaguar does have one thing that people want, and that's gorgeous good looks. But only the XK has it. The rest of the lineup are barely distinguishable from Hyudais and Kias, due to those companies cribbing Jaguar's look.