By Mike Torpey on 2022-03-26 - Driving Force news editor and responsible for organising our daily output. He was staff motoring editor of the Liverpool Echo for 20 years.
Jaguar XF Sportbrake
P250 R-Dynamic SE
STYLISH, engaging to drive and blessed with the space of a small warehouse - sounds like a near perfect recipe for a family estate car.
Add a serious dollop of punch along with the premium presence of that snarling Jaguar badge and you have a model more than likely to live up to its racy name of Sportbrake.
Jaguar's XF saloon range is a distinguished line-up in its own right but the Sportbrake caters for drivers requiring appreciably more space, and delivers it with a shedload of panache.
In fact while the F-Pace and E-Pace both cater admirably for the SUV market if it's a traditional estate you require then the Sportbrake really takes some matching.
Four-cylinder petrol and diesel engines are up for grabs along with the option of rear or all-wheel drive and our tested version, in sporty R-Dynamic SE trim, featured the lower powered of the two petrol units.
Called P250 in reference to its 250PS of horsepower, it has a list price of £40,125 but included almost £5,000 worth of optional extras.
This may sound extravagant, though a case can easily be made for adding most of them - a fixed panoramic roof at Â£1,125 which brought a bright airy feel to the car's cabin, a classy-looking Bluefire metallic paint for Â£700 and a Meridian surround sound system for Â£820 to name but three.
And like most of its Jaguar stablemates the XF Sportbrake provides a relaxing interior environment, yet is more focused thanks to several upgrades introduced over the past 12 months.
So you get a larger Pivi Pro touchscreen - the same set-up used in the Land Rover Defender - a dashboard that's easy on the eye, a 3D surround camera and smarter steering wheel, along with fully powered and heated seats.
Then there are useful features like a cabin air ionisation system and air quality sensor (for £200 the pair) complementing other handy items like the wireless mobile phone charger.
As for that all-important carrying capacity, the giant boot with its powered tailgate can accommodate 565 litres with all five seats in place and a whopping 1,700 litres with them folded down, making it second only to estate versions of Mercedes E-Class.
There's plenty of oddments space too with seatback pockets, door bins, cup holders, coin trays and a lockable cooled glovebox.
The P250 may be the smaller of the two petrol engines on offer but it certainly performs well, even if drivers may struggle to match the claimed average fuel economy figure of 33.9 miles per gallon.
Performance though is extremely spirited, clocking 0-60mph in 6.7 seconds as the car accelerates sweetly through the eight-speed automatic gearbox.
While the Sportbrake feels composed, well balanced and quiet, you can also tailor the experience via drive modes called Comfort, Dynamic and Rain/Ice/Snow, the first two proving ideal for everyday motoring or a sportier drive with sharpened throttle responses.
It all adds up to a premium family offering that not only looks peerless in its design but accomplishes the bread and butter job of an estate car.
Jaguar XF Sportbrake P250 R-Dynamic SE
Mechanical:250ps, 1,997cc, 4cyl petrol engine driving rear wheels via eight-speed automatic transmission
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