What's New for 2000
The performance-minded, supercharged, V8-powered XKR joins the lineup this year. It benefits from upgrades made to the rest of the XK8 family that include all-speed traction control, improved ABS and rain-sensing windshield wipers, while a new navigation system is being offered as optional equipment.
This year, fans of Jaguar's XK-Series have another model to consider, the XKR.
Attractive and powerful, the XKR is the performance version of the XK8, much like the XJR is the performance version of the XJ8 sedan. And like the XJR, the XKR's calling card is its engine. Supercharged with twin intercoolers, the 4.0-liter V8 develops 370 horsepower and 387 pound-feet of torque; it's mated to a four-speed automatic transmission. The XKR leaps from zero to 60 in approximately 5.4 seconds, and is quicker than just about any other car on the road.
As with the XK8, the XKR comes in two styles: the curvaceous coupe or the sleek convertible. The convertible features a power-operated top that lowers, raises and locks into place with the push of a button. Stylistically, the XKR is one of the best-looking luxury coupes or convertibles available. Headlights slope off with a feline's squint and lead to lines that hark back to earlier Jaguars, notably the seductive E-Type.
Polished wood and Connolly leather -- standard equipment on all Jags -- give the cabin a warm feel. Like most luxury coupes/roadsters, legroom for the front passengers is excellent, but rear-passenger accommodations are minimal. For 2000, a new navigation system debuts and braking ability is enhanced via a new ABS system. Additional safety improvements for 2000 come in the form of electronic seatbelt pre-tensioners, but it should be noted that the XK Series is the only model in Jaguar's lineup without side airbags.
The XKR is a fine car in either coupe or convertible form. Its closest competitor is the Porsche 911. The 911 is certainly the more sporting of the two, and it can also be ordered with a manual transmission. However, the Jaguar does have that extra English flair. For high-speed cruising with class, check out the new XKR.