Should You Get All-Wheel Drive? - 2012 Jaguar XF Long-Term Road Test

2012 Jaguar XF Long Term Road Test

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2012 Jaguar XF: Should You Get All-Wheel Drive?

January 2, 2013

2012 Jaguar XF

A recent bout of rain in Southern California (I know, the horror!) plus news of big storms pummeling the Midwest during the holidays had me thinking about our rear-wheel-drive Jaguar XF. Specifically: would I prefer to have all-wheel drive?

From the XF's debut, Jaguar has been making the decision for you — the car has been available with rear drive only. But changes for the 2013 XF as all-wheel drive becomes available for the first time. As a shopper, now you have to decide if all-wheel drive is worth the extra cost, complexity and reduced fuel efficiency.

I think the decision largely rests on the clime of where you live, and how often you drive. In the wet conditions I've been driving the XF in, I can think of only one time where AWD would have been nice — I needed to accelerate quickly on a city street, but our XF's supercharged V8 quickly overwhelmed the rear tires on the wet road. For Southern California, AWD isn't needed or even really wanted.

But the story could be different if I lived somewhere where it snows or freezes frequently. Say, like Denver. Or Perth. Then I think AWD would be worth it to me.

The good thing is that for 2013 XF, you finally get the choice.

Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor @ 15,912 miles

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