THE world was waiting for the compact executive Jaguar and it certainly was not disappointed.
The XE has been hailed as the successor to the X-Type of the early 2000s, but this is only true in part.
The reason being that the X-Type had a high degree of Ford input due to the Jaguar company being under blue badge ownership at the time and was certainly not a pedigree Big Cat.
The truth is that the XE is the logical successor to the iconic Mark 2 2.4 of the early 1960s, one of Jaguars most successful cars.
But can the XE wear this crown with confidence? The answer has to be yes but in a completely modern perspective.
This is a designed from scratch true Jaguar and although you do not get the smell of wood veneer and old leather so reminiscent of the Mark 2, you do get just about everything the modern executive is shouting out for.
So much so that the XE has seen off the competition to emerge triumphant in its class at the UK Car of the Year Awards, being named 2016's Best Executive Car.
The judges said that the Jaguar XE makes you feel special. It's got good engines, an excellent ride and is great to drive.
Designed by the team led by Jaguar design director Ian Callum the XE had to be the car that showed BMW and Mercedes-Benz that they certainly had not got it all their own way in this hotly contested sector.
Already hailed as the best driver's car in its class, the updates to the XE for the 2017 model year have enhanced this further.
It now comes with key specification additions including all-wheel drive system, which is available to order on the 2.0-litre 180ps diesel variant.
But my drive was in one of the most significant models of the range, the two-wheel-drive SE 2.0 i4 163ps diesel which would set you back £29,775.
The thing about this car is that its economy stats will turn heads in the company car sector with a combined economy figure of 75mpg and CO2 emissions under the 100 g/km mark at 99 - a big difference to the old six-cylinder petrol Mark 2 with its 18mpg.
But does this parsimonious diesel drive well? Most definitely yes in both handling and performance. With 132mph on tap and a 0-62mph sprint of 7.9 seconds.
It is an agile performer, snaking through bends in a supremely confident manner and supply a fine degree of road feel through the steering.
This car was equipped with a six-speed manual gearbox which suited the car very well. I have always been a fan of manual Jags and this one did not disappoint.
But in this arena the secret of success can be in the specification and the feelgood factor is there is bucketloads with all the usual features you would expect as standard.