Paramount XKR Review

>> Thursday, December 25, 2008

 The Jaguar XK8 is a classic. Six years after its debut, the design is still fresh, bold and dramatic. It's one of those cars that somehow looks fast standing still. Okay, viewed from the side, the boot is about two feet too long- thanks to US regulations requiring all expensive cars to accommodate two golf bags. Even so, the Jag rules. Freshened Porsches, Mercs, Beemers and Lexi still can't compete with the XK's svelte aggression. Slinking into the club's parking lot, the Jag proclaims, 'Look out boys, this cat has claws!'

Except it doesn't. Yes, the XK is fast. The standard 4.0 litre car zooms from zero to sixty in 6.6 seconds. The supercharged XKR makes the same dash in 5.1. But anyone who loves life (or hates insurance forms) shouldn't try to carry that speed into a corner. The heavyweight XK8 is a cleverly disguised boulevard cruiser. Ask it to change directions quickly and, well, hippo-type wallowing ensues. It doesn't matter if you try to counter the XK's 'hard-a-starboard' body roll with brakes, acceleration, opposite lock or prayer. Bad things happen. Owners quickly learn to restrict their fun to straight-line blasts or slow motion posing.

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