SOMETIMES a vehicle manufacturer tries to blend the best of the old in an entirely modern approach.
Many have tried and failed but some have succeeded magnificently.
And one of the best exponents of this success is Jaguar which has made its XF R-Sport a modern successor to the fast and luxurious Jaguar Mk IIs which were the envy of all on the roads in the 1960s.
Not that the latest big cat is a retro exercise, but it just brings back those wonderful days of pure performance punch and luxury that only this manufacturer seems to refine in such quantities.
This R-Sport is the executive express that had heads turning at its launch due to a mix of power and astonishing economy blended with some breathtaking driving enjoyment.
I can certainly see it locked in a sales battle royal with the new BMW 5 Series.
At the heart of the car is Jaguar's 1,999cc 2.0-litre i4 turbocharged Ingenium diesel engine feeding its 180ps of power via an eight-speed automatic transmission.
The car was the rear-wheel-drive - not all wheeld drive - version which puts it more in line for a comparison with the Jaguars of old.
But if you check the records, a MkII 3.4 of 1967 with its six-cylinder petrol engine could hit 120mph and reach 62mph in 11.9 seconds, all for a wallet-wrenching 16mpg.
A sparking and vibrant car of its day, but its modern equivalent ups the ante to 142mph with a 7.7second 0-60mph sprint. But the really big difference is a combined mpg figure of 65.7mph. Couple this with ow emissions of 114g/km and the equation of sound economy and pure pleasure begins to create an attractive picture of the sort of experience that is the domain of the big cat.
Although only 2.0-litre, the engine - the latest Ingenium unit - can raise its voice at times, but when under instantaneous pedal pressure has reserves of poke that just make you smile.
Full marks to the marriage of engine and auto transmission because changes are handled in a slick manner and the box holds gears nicely under pedal pressure and changes up appropriately when needed.
The R-Sport's stiffer suspension helps to reduce roll and give better body control.
In short, this car is a lithe graceful and fast set of wheels that just will not disappoint the enthusiastic driver.
Inside there is a cosy and comfortable ambiance and the driver feels snuggled in by a generous centre console. The famous Jaguar circular transmission selector pops up out of the console when the car is activated.