Sunday, September 30, 2007

2008 Jaguar S-Type Review

In its last model year, the 2008 Jaguar S-Type arrives largely unchanged from last year's model, with just a few cosmetic alterations to catch the fancy of new buyers. It will be replaced by the Jaguar XF for the 2009 model year.

The S-Type, Jaguar's mid-sized offering both price- and size-wise, comes in three different versions, each with it's own engine. The base model comes with a 235 horsepower, 3.0 liter V6 engine, with the next level up offering a 300 horsepower, 4.2 liter V8. The highest trimmed R model comes with a V8 engine as well, but it's supercharged and has 400 horsepower. The transmission is the same on all three trims: a ZF six-speed automatic, with traction control standard.

Cosmetic changes are the real differences between the 2008 Jaguar S Type and last year's version. All trims now have the same bumper as previous year's R editions, and have wheels that are an inch larger than last year, 18 and 19 inches, respectively. As well, the grille sports a circular Jaguar badge and features horizontal lines with slimmer vertical ones. The tail lights have been redesigned to look more high tech, and instead of fog lights, the R edition has mesh inserts which allow air to reach the oil coolers. (The R edition also has twin tailpipes, a spoiler on the trunk, and xenon head lights, while the other trims do not.)

Inside the Jaguar S-Type, there is leather-trimmed seating for five, with chronograph-inspired gauges, and burl walnut veneer. There's also an upgrade to the Satin Edition, which includes a leather steering wheel and shifter knob, as well as access to limited-edition paint colors for the exterior. Climate control has dual zone capability, and the power-adjustable steering wheel is a standard feature, as are rain-sensing windshield wipers and a reverse parking control system. Cruise control is available either on it's own or as part of the luxury package on the R edition. While adjustable pedals were a standard feature last year, they've been removed from the 2008 model.

Safety features of the 2008 Jaguar S-Type include the maker's proprietary adaptive restraint system, as well as side-impact and side-curtain airbags, anti-lock brakes, and a stability control system, all standard.

Estimated fuel efficiency of the Jaguar S-Type varies between 15-17 mpg in the city to 22-26 mpg on open highway. Starting MSRPs range from $48,335 - $64,335.

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