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Jaguar XF Sportbrake review - Interior & comfort

Recent changes have hugely improved the XF’s cabin, though it lacks the flash of its German rivals

Carbuyer Rating

4.3 out of 5

Owners Rating

3.3 out of 5

Read owner reviews
Interior & comfort Rating

4.5 out of 5

Standards are high in the executive estate class and the Jaguar XF Sportbrake has a decent interior. It lacks the technological ‘wow’ factor the BMW 5 Series Touring and Mercedes E-Class Estate have, but if you prefer your dashboards to be subtly elegant rather than glossy tech-fests, you’ll be happy.

Jaguar XF Sportbrake dashboard

A facelift in 2021 significantly improved the XF’s interior, with much of that attention focused on the dashboard and centre console area. Out went the old rotary gear selector and in came a slightly more traditional lever arrangement. Ahead of this, Jaguar’s smaller infotainment screen has been replaced by a larger 11.4-inch touchscreen that spans the width of the console, while the physical air conditioning controls below are more neatly arranged, though the push-pull arrangement to swap between cabin and seat heating takes some getting used to.

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The changes didn’t stop there. The steering wheel is from the I-Pace, and the instrument cluster was updated to a screen-based system. To top it all, the old rotating air vents at either end of the dashboard were replaced with more conventional ones, which look less flashy but arguably look better in the redesigned dashboard.

The end result is an environment that looks, feels, and operates better than it did before. The Pivi Pro infotainment system on the large touchscreen is leaps and bounds ahead of its predecessor. It’s clearer than ever, responsive, and doesn’t have much lag between menus. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard, too.

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Physical (rather than touch-sensitive) controls on the new steering wheel for certain functions are also welcome, and a plus point over some rivals. And to top it all, fit and finish, and material quality are impressive too. If we have any real criticism, it’s that some of the trim finishes can make the cabin feel quite dark. You’ll get more design flair and features in some rivals too, though for class and ease of use, the XF Sportbrake is right up there.

Equipment

Last time Jaguar updated the XF Sportbrake it consolidated the number of trim levels to just three models. The R-Dynamic SE starts at just under £41,000 in D200 form and £42,000 as the P250, and comes with 19-inch alloy wheels, 12-way adjustable heated front seats, a power tailgate, an 11.4-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, LED headlights, and a Meridian sound system.

Upgrading to the R-Dynamic HSE for around £2,000 (D200 only) swaps the 19-inch alloy wheels for 20-inch items, and the seats are upgraded too, with 16-way adjustment and Windsor leather upholstery. £49,000 gets the 300 Sport, only available with the P300 petrol engine. Equipment is similar to the R-Dynamic HSE, but it does come with its own design of 20-inch wheels.

Options

We’ve tried out a few of the XF Sportbrake’s options, and some are better than others. You can give the £500 soft-close doors a miss, and ignore the £50 gesture control for the roof blind entirely. The £1,100 panoramic roof is appealing though, throwing more light into the sometimes gloomy cabin, and while just over £800 sounds like a lot of money for a head-up display, it works well and shows all the key information clearly.

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