By on December 31, 2015

2009 Jaguar XF

Imagine if Lucas, Prince of Darkness were still supplying electrics to the British car industry. A Lucas navigation system would make Apple Maps look like a good choice. Lucas telematics would require a Whitworth wrench to access.

I kid because I love. I’ve spent more hours under the hood of British sports cars than just about anything else in my life, though not at all in the last decade or so. Even then, I still have MG shop manuals under my bathroom sink, ready for the restoration of the car I don’t yet own.

I’m closing out the year (and my fortnight of V-8 family sedans) with an Ian Callum stunner: the 2009 Jaguar XF Supercharged. There seem to be a good number of these in the $15,000-$20,000 range. I chose this one primarily because it wasn’t silver, and the photos aren’t awful.

I have nothing against silver cars specifically. It just isn’t my favorite shade on this Jag.

Save for the X and S-types of the early Ford era, I can’t think of any Jaguar that wasn’t magnificently styled. The XF is no different. The interior looks quite pleasant, though some materials may not have worn well. The steering wheel appears to be a GM-esque parts-bin item, which is hardly unusual considering Jaguar’s history.

Reliability is always a concern with any British car. I’ve been searching and I can’t seem to find any overwhelmingly consistent problems with the XF. Electrics dominate the problem list, naturally, though most don’t seem more than an annoyance. I’m sure I’ll be corrected by a reader who watched their own XF go up in flames.

This is very appealing. I’m swayed both by the wonderful styling and power, and by the Britishness. The Germans are the leaders in this segment for a reason, but I enjoy being different.

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63 Comments on “Digestible Collectible: 2009 Jaguar XF Supercharged...”


  • avatar
    Land Ark

    I think these things are beautiful. I’m not a huge fan of the interiors of them, but I definitely fantasize about what driving one would be like.

    I’ll wait to hear from others whether or not these have Audi-sized reliability issues that used to plague the Jag brand.

    • 0 avatar
      SayHiToYourMom

      Audi is the most reliable European maker right now.

      • 0 avatar
        JD23

        The internet is unwilling to abandon the Audi awful reliability meme, regardless of current data.

        • 0 avatar
          dal20402

          They may have addressed reliability (we’ll see in five years or so) but they still have not addressed serviceability. Audi products remain the most difficult to service of any mainstream manufacturer. It’s just not something VAG cares about.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          “The internet is unwilling to abandon the Audi awful reliability meme, regardless of current data.”

          Hows your MY08 doing?

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            Giving me flashbacks, bro.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Post Traumatic VAG Disorder.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            I feel bad for whoever bought my 2008 Jetta Wolfsburg 2.0T. Twas all used up after 36 months. Suspension sounded like an old many coming down the stairs in the morning, it had 50K miles and didn’t have the DSG fluid change (because lease, and [email protected] that), the 2.0T engine was starting to get coked up and was probably sludgy, headliner was falling in the back, head lights went out on a regular basis, moonroof didn’t work. Boo that Mexican piece of garbage.

            OTOH, my GTI is still owned by the guy I sold it to and is in excellent shape. Sometimes I miss that car.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            “didn’t have the DSG fluid change”

            Guess who got his trans fluid changed today? :) I was also complemented by the senior tech for having such a clean 2002 Saturn (underneath I presume).

            “Boo that Mexican piece of garbage”

            I think a certain Ford sedan be hecho en Mexico…

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            Well to be fair to the Mexicans, the most reliable and well put together VW I’ve owned was made in Puebla. The build quality wasn’t the issue with my Jetta, it was the components made in Hungary, Germany, among other places. It was screwed together fine with $hit parts.

          • 0 avatar
            JD23

            I have a MY11 that has been quite good for over five years. I only plan to keep it for seven to eight years, so someone else will learn whether the car is reliable into old age. That said, I would only buy an Audi new and would not skimp on maintenance.

        • 0 avatar
          merkidemis

          Current data, maybe, but having all 3 diffs leak at the same time on a ’00 A6 wasn’t fun. Nor was the coolant leak that required replacing a $0.25 part, but $1800 in labor to get to. Nor was the failed sunroof motor. Or the ABS controller. Or the transmission. Or the rear wheel bearings. Or the radio.

  • avatar
    jjklongisland

    I absolutely love the styling of this car. In my opinion it should have only been produced in the color black. I have never driven a newer Jag but when I was in college many many years ago jags were one of my favorite cars to park when I was a valet at a swanky country club. Hopefully one day I will gather up the courage to but one when I have some disposable income… Too many dream cars, not enough money…

  • avatar
    zelig

    I’ve been fortunate to spend some time in one, including behind the wheel. Great muscly/sporty feel with a stout structure. Drives a bit heavy compared to a Miata. (Duh.) Rear legroom is not vast, but that’s not why you buy one.

    IMO the facelifted versions don’t look as nice as these originals. And at these prices I am increasingly tempted…

  • avatar
    30-mile fetch

    Rarely has such beautiful sheet metal been let down so thoroughly by such a bland interior. The design of that dashboard is really uninspired, as if they exhausted their design budget the exact moment someone sat down to pen the interior.

    “Oh, you can only pay me for an hour of design time with this thing? OK, well here’s two straight parallel lines. Black above, silver between, and if you’re feeling fancy put some electric eyelids on the vents so they can break later on. OK? Great. Early lunch.”

    • 0 avatar
      Davekaybsc

      Agreed, and the latest XF is even worse. It’s like they took the outgoing car, and removed every last bit of distinctiveness. The HVAC control switches in the 2016 car look too cheap for a Kia Rio.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    Does it come with a container NOS wiring smoke? (I kid…)

    This design has worn well on me although I think I’d pull the trigger on a slightly less complex naturally aspirated V8. Doug should go get one at CarMax – with an extended warranty of course.

  • avatar
    tonyola

    The XF is so much better looking than the S-Type it replaced. Jaguar was right in abandoning the retro look when it came to this car.

  • avatar
    87 Morgan

    I too find these cars to be unbelievably sexy. Of the four euro luxury brands (Audi BMW Mercedes Jag) I find the Jags to be the most compelling to look at.

    I am far to much of a wimp to ever own one though. Having owned one British make that spent as much time being repaired as being driven I can’t go back to that kind of self immolation again.

    • 0 avatar
      gtemnykh

      They’re definitely very fetching looking. I was in Paris a few weeks ago and all of the cabs for hire there are either a) Prius V, b) Skoda Superb, or C) a business class premium car. So loads of W212 Merc E-klasse, BMWs, Audis, Lexus IS/GS, and Infinitis (all diesels mind you). The standout among all of these was a well worn looking black Jag XF. It just looked sooo right cruising through narrow Paris streets parting the seas of little bity city cars. Immense presence, I wish I had the balls to own one of these out of warranty stateside.

  • avatar
    RideHeight

    They failed to remove the rubber shipping collars from those wheels.
    Sloppy.

  • avatar
    Superdessucke

    Beautiful car but I would be afraid it would leave me lying on the side of the road broke and butt hurt. See if you can get one with an extended warranty. I’ll open my window so I can hear the laughter five states away lol!

  • avatar
    EspritdeFacelVega

    I had one of those unloved X-Types, a 2003 2.5 in zircon blue with dove leather, bought new to replace my 97 Benz C-Class. I ended up keeping the Jag for 10 years and 170,000 km (over 100k miles). It was actually very reliable and I received compliments on the car (I’ll credit the colour) until the day I sold it. My only disappointment was some fairly serious non-visible rocker panel rust. It was more reliable than my C-Class and hugely more reliable than friends’ BMWs, Audis, Benzes and Volvos. I have an Infiniti M45x now, also bulletproof reliable, but am planning to eventually replace it with a CPO Jag XJ. Wouldn’t hesitate to buy another Jag.

    • 0 avatar
      30-mile fetch

      Love the looks of the X-type. That’s a bit heretical in the auto enthusiast world, but there it is. I haven’t so much as sat in one and it may have come from a somewhat humble platform, but they looked great and upheld the stately old-school Jag design language better than the S-type of the time. I saw a dark grey wagon with the black interior once, and it was fantastic and distinctive looking car.

      How did yours drive, and how did that little 2.5 V6 move it along?

  • avatar
    jthorner

    Over the past decade I’ve replaced prematurely failed ABS controllers made by ATE/Teves (French) which failed in massive quantities due to cracked circuit boards, re-soldered cold solder joints inside Bosch relays (German) and spent mega bucks replacing early life failure Marelli (Italy) throttle position sensors. Our 2006 Acura went into limp home mode one day in 2010 thanks to a failed electronic relay.

    The electronic sensors, controllers, displays and switches in modern German cars are notoriously expensive post-warranty issues on much of their modern production, yet nobody ever bags on Bosch for it. Why?

    Why Lucas always gets bagged on for failed electrical/electronic devices and the rest of the parts makers get a pass has always been a mystery to me.

    Our ’67 Jaguar hasn’t had any more electrical issues than have the other older cars in our fun-fleet, not to mention our modern iron.

    • 0 avatar
      ExPatBrit

      Lucas always gets the blame.

      The manufacturers spec the wiring and fusing requirements which was where many of the problems on those old British cars occurred.

      Also a problem is that Fuse ratings for British cars are quite different . A 50A UK fuse is about 30A US AGC type.

      The components were about average for the time, however up until the 80s you could often dismantle and repair Lucas components. You could clean the contacts in a light or wiper switch for example.

      Of course the switches not being sealed tend to lead to other problems.

      My VAG cars had occasional electronic gremlins , who remembers the multiple revs of coil packs, after 8 years the REV R version fixed it !. Our last Audi had a Bosch airbag/ steering wheel position and clock spring sensor . The airbag light would be on for a couple of minutes in the morning when I started the car. Replacement was $750-1000 from the dealer.

      I drilled out the plastic rivets and cleaned it, it worked. I sold it several months later, never to return. Too complicated by half!

  • avatar
    danio3834

    The AJ V8 was a pretty decent engine by this time. I’d buy one for the right price.

  • avatar
    ajla

    “Save for the X and S-types of the early Ford era, I can’t think of any Jaguar that wasn’t magnificently styled.”

    Does anyone really consider the XJ40 to have “magnificent” styling?

    • 0 avatar
      30-mile fetch

      The square late 80s headlights kind of kill the design for me. I much prefer the return to the quad round headlights of the late 90s and early 2000s. That car was a majestic example of the long, low, linear sedan that just doesn’t exist anymore.

    • 0 avatar

      believe me: it grows on you. although I much prefer the design of a X300/308 (a XJ40 comprehensive facelift, actually) or a X350, the XJ40 is subtly beautiful. not to everyone’s tastes, maybe not magnificent, I do admit, but it grows on you. I see the XJ40 as an evolution of the XJS’s design theme, from the lights to the low slung to a sort of sleekness. as for the early Ford era models mentioned in the text, I find the X-Type prettier than a W203 Mercedes C-Class and I really dig the S-Type (except for the pre-facelift fugly interior, a fault that the XF also has).

      four months ago, I bought a 1989 3.6-liter XJ40 for a song and will restore it. the poor cat needs new leather, some engine work, interior bits, new door handles, a new grille, a new rear glass and the self-leveling rear suspension sorted out. it won’t be cheap and I knew it when I bit the bullet but, since I live in Brazil and there aren’t many pre-1999 Jags around here, I thought it was worth the effort.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Where will you source all of those very specific parts if they didn’t sell well in Brazil? Internet?

        • 0 avatar

          yes, Sir. for example, I just got a new water pump for $40 on Amazon US, while British sellers were asking £60 on eBay (and stores here would charge me some $500 for the same pump). the internet made possible the restoration of some foreign oldies here in Brazil. having a good friend living in NYC and a sister living in Austria, I rely on them and on my occasional holidays to source parts for my XJ40 and my ’67 Volvo 122S (with an 850 2.5NA engine swap, as a previous owner tossed the original B18 because no one wanted to source parts for it in the 1970s, replacing it with a Pontiac Iron Duke 2.5 engine).

          as former TTAC writer Marcelo de Vasconcellos wrote a few times, the Brazilian car market was closed for imports between 1976 and 1990. when car imports were allowed again, Jaguar had a small and not-so-appealing car lineup. they only managed to sell over 200 units/yr by 2001, so the older felines are quite rare around here.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I do seem to recall gearing about the lack of imports, that’s quite a few years to go without.

            First an XJ40 and now ’67 Volvo 122S? Sir, you get more and more interesting.

  • avatar
    Joshua Johnson

    I was hoping you would cover one of the supercharged AJV8 cars from Jaguar. I’ve had a 2005 S-Type R for almost seven years now. While the car has never left me stranded as everyone seems to fear, it has not been inexpensive to operate. But, I knew that going in and I have enjoyed every moment driving the heck out of this car. This car definitely loves to be pushed hard rather than loaf about. There is nothing as sublime as the supercharger whine while going through a Rocky Mountain pass, with the aftermarket exhaust bellowing away.

    The 2009 XF supercharged is the successor to my car, with many mechanical items being similar. That being said, major items to watch out for are coolant hoses and transmission cooler lines. There are 18 coolant hoses, with 12-14 that are likely to fail in the 8yr/100k mile range (I had three burst on me before I did an overhaul). The biggie, is a hose that runs under the supercharger. Costs around $1800-$2500 to fix that one alone (indy/dealer). The rest are not too bad if done at the same time. It’s not the part costs, but the labor involved in accessing and replacing the hoses. For the transmission cooler lines, there is this awesome rubber meets metal section that likes to weep fluid if exposed to extreme temperatures (I’ve done mine twice, after driving in -10 to -20 weather). Although an unintended benefit of this is replacing the “sealed for life” transmission fluid.

    Other idiosyncrasies to watch out for are low battery life causing electronic mayhem, dual climate control valves melting down, and auto leveling headlights that start to droop.

    A solid maintenance history is a must, as with all highly tuned European cars, in order to mitigate the world of misery thrust upon the unsuspecting looking for bargain power.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Like the series and I understand what you’re trying to accomplish here, but I don’t see an MY09 of anything as collectible just yet. My .02.

    • 0 avatar
      Fred

      Best you can hope for with a car like this, is that the car won’t need a lot of expensive work and it won’t depreciate much.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Hate to be the bearer of bad news, but these depreciate. A lot.

        “Luxury lists for $49,975 and $55,975, muscle at $62,975. Originality is standard equipment on both. Jaguar, finally, has turned both eyes toward the future.”

        http://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/2009-jaguar-xf-first-drive-review-1

        MY09 Jaguar XF V8 Supercharged

        12/17/15 ATLANTA Lease $14,600 54,281 Avg WHITE 8G A Yes
        12/01/15 OHIO Regular $15,200 67,353 Avg SILVER 8G A Yes
        12/03/15 PA Regular $17,100 68,175 Above BLACK 8G P Yes
        12/08/15 RIVRSIDE Regular $15,400 86,759 Avg BROWN 8G A Yes
        12/09/15 SAN ANTO Regular $13,800 88,854 Avg BLACK 8G A Yes
        12/23/15 DALLAS Regular $13,500 95,056 Avg SILVER 8G A Yes
        12/17/15 GEORGIA Regular $15,000 96,532 Avg NONE 8G A No

        I also don’t think these are old enough to be collectible, which was sort of my original point. Desirable? Sure. But you’re not gonna buy one today and sell it in five years for a profit which is what typically a “collectible” car can do.

        My dentist picked up an MY89 Trans Am GTA (350) very clean but higher miles (95K) for cheap. He will more than likely profit if he sells it in five years, because those are collectible.

        • 0 avatar
          krhodes1

          I think his point was that it won’t depreciate much MORE. The initial depreciation on any luxury car is killer, even (maybe especially) the Japanese ones. But once they hit the teens/low 20s they stay there for a long time. Pick one of these up for the price of a new Altima and I would be surprised if you spend nearly as much on depreciation over the next five years as the Altima owner would would cost. Assuming second/third car annual mileages, of course. Which is the right way to own a well-depreciated luxury barge.

          • 0 avatar

            You would be surprised.

            Until you hit ~$2-4000, you haven’t hit bottom for depreciation on a Jaguar sedan.

          • 0 avatar
            krhodes1

            Yes, you can get all sorts of 15yo big luxury cars for that money. Because they are beat to crap, usually with intergalactic mileage, a Christmas tree dash, and hooker and blow residue in the back seat. A nice one that is worth having will be still be $15-20K.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Jags will keep sinking to around 15-20% of original cost and then maybe it might even out when they are clean/avg. The opportunity is in utilizing the post Nikasil era Ford designed Jags which are not so bad to keep long term (or a Nikasil era Jag and do a swap).

            Long platform use (DEW98, X300/308, X350) + long engine use (AJV8, Ford Duratec) = opportunity to a point.

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    I doubt that is a GM tiller. It does resemble the GM steering wheel of the age but the steering wheel that looked like that in the Grand Prix and the B-Body Gen II vans (among others) is HUUUUUGE and thin – like the size of a school bus steering wheel in diameter.

  • avatar
    dal20402

    I’ve had trouble adapting to the Ian Callum Jaguar era. I just like Audis better, both inside and out, although I would expect the aluminum Jags to drive better. As much as it makes me sound old to say it, my favorite Jag remains the 2008-09 X358 XJR, and I’ve occasionally been tempted by them, although they’re very rare.

  • avatar

    Jaguars depreciate so ridiculously fast, I could get an XJ-L Supersport for less than the price of a loaded Jeep Grand Cherokee.

    The XF and XJ can be purchased cheaply – but repair costs are still high.

    My leased XJ-L’s tires were $300 a piece and it loved to grind Rear tires.

  • avatar

    28 is dead on. English beauty is fleeting, at least financially.

    In the Jaguar/LR lease return lane, the only thing wafting through the air thicker than the fragrance of coolant is the raw odor of depreciation.

    Except there is a lucrative market for Range Rovers. Not so for Jaguars.

    Let me spin you the yarn of a stupid ’14 XJ-R w/18k miles that was $129k MSRP, lingered at a Jaguar dealer for months as a Select CPO unit prior to being hustled off to the auction and sold for $76k to some idiots (us) and I’m STILL sitting on hoping to take a $4k loss and be done with it. No one wants the car – no JAG store, no other dealer on OVE, no one on eBay, no body.

    Never another late-model Jaguar ever again.

  • avatar
    05lgt

    Drop dead gorgeous, Scary to own, Too much fun on those occasions when everything works out just right, Certain to destroy your other relationships and your bank account, Won’t be worth jack in another 10 years no matter how lucky and diligent you are, Reminds me of … something. I’m old and can’t remember what though.

  • avatar
    Brett Woods

    I will throw my lot in with the rousing chorus praising Ian Callum. It can’t be denied that he was the naz with a pencil and Ford was so lucky to have him in the fold and his drawings in the locker. Hard to say why he can design a beautiful carriage and some others can’t. There are others I think off up there with him like Henrick Fisker and Ralph Gilles who “get it.” Others for sure. But Ian Callum really does stand out. I just don’t know why there are not more gorgeous cars. I don’t know who designs Chevrolets. And I probably don’t know because there has been a parade of mediocre designs for the last 35 years. Sure the Vette and the Cruze are nice, but what stand-out designs can you point too. Don’t say Camaro, it’s ergonomically flawed. (Good runners, nothing wrong inside.)

    I do remember the very day I first saw this Jag. It was white. Outside of a hospital in Ohio. Parked right against a brick wall near the entrance. Distinctive. Expensive looking. Beautiful. That’s all I can say.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      I agree Callum stands out, and as for Gilles his hatred of visibility makes me lukewarm toward him.

      I’m not sure who is styling GM’s products post 2010 but they should probably be relegated back to Starbucks 30hr/week.

      • 0 avatar
        Brett Woods

        I do agree with you, but I cut him some slack. It would be like calling a Samoan fat. He’s an American. It’s not like he grew up in Florence. Some Gilles designs are cleverly comfortable while other interiors have been diminished, pinching and overly personal for a vehicle so big and thirsty. And yes, less than optimal visibility. Easy to see from up on my high horse!

        I hope he will take advantage of his new connections to tour the museums, galleries, palaces, and churches of Italy. I think he has the spark, but it wouldn’t hurt any to gaze up in the Sistine Chapel one more time.

  • avatar
    burgersandbeer

    The Jaguar XF has caught my eye lately as well. I keep reading vague references to horrific maintenance costs, yet I can’t find a single specific example of what allegedly fails so often. I read that TrueDelta reported a much higher frequency of repair than competing models, but I can’t find any numbers on that sight to back that claim up; XFs are exactly average for the class, maybe even better than competitors.

    The previously mentioned coolant hoses are the only thing remotely close to a problem. For this class of car, if an $1,800 repair is all you have to worry about, you are in good shape. Also, the later 5.0 NA engines are almost as strong as the ’09 supercharged 4.2, and don’t suffer the coolant hose issue.

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