Seat Time is a chance for us to share our impressions of vehicles being tested in the Autoline Garage and at media previews from around the globe.
Reviewer: Chip Drake
Vehicle: 2016 Jaguar XJL Portfolio AWD
Like any good Ultimate Fighting Championship Match…
when the fighters enter the Octagon the action is fast and furious and can be over in a matter of seconds. After driving the 2016 Jaguar XJL I thought that maybe JLR might consider a UFC edition since there seems to be an internal battle going on within this $90,000 luxury automobile.
Now, don’t get me wrong, this is one tremendous vehicle. Beautifully styled on the outside – our loan was painted in British Racing Green-Metallic – and equipped with a 3-Liter supercharged powertrain with 340 horsepower and an 8-speed automatic transmission. This combination allowed our Portfolio AWD edition to slip through city streets – taking it easy on the mpgs with its Intelligent Start-Stop function.
But as beautiful as the Jaguar is on the road, when you open the driver’s door it’s as if you’re entering a suite at the Four Seasons. A beautiful interior with wood trim encompassing the cabin, sweet heated and cooled front and rear leather seats, and a panoramic roof that yields a captivating view.
But it’s technology that everyone is talking about these days, be it a sub-compact cutie or a long-based beauty like this XJL. And that’s where the fight begins.
In the past, Jaguar always seemed lagging when it came to the multimedia command center in the center console. But to its credit, the company recognized those inefficiencies and upgraded the 2016 version with what it calls its InControl Touch Pro.
This was to be the answer to all those technological hiccups over the last few years. And when it comes to Bluetooth – Hallelujah – it worked well. No confusing seven step process to link your phone, just a clean couple of taps and you were in. But unfortunately, the marks for Jaguar’s InControl Touch Pro went downhill from there.
Though our local radio stations were not affected, I can’t recall how many times the satellite radio feed froze after a mere touch of my finger; Yes, whether it was Wilco or the Weather Channel – whatever the broadcast – it just disappeared, turning the touchscreen into a punching bag for my index finger attempting to reboot the system.
But the fight didn’t stop there; Other times, you would try to change categories – such as moving from Pop to Rock – but nothing would move: the screen was frozen in time and didn’t return to life until the XJL itself was restarted
In addition, there were a handful of times that rear view camera didn’t engage as I backed out of my driveway.
Now obviously the pleasantries of the XJL far outnumbered any disappointments, however, when you’re paying almost $90,000 for a luxury car you shouldn’t have to be fighting with your 8” Touchscreen. Worse yet, stopping your car to reboot the system.
Earlier I suggested perhaps a Jaguar UFC edition might make sense. If so, to take full advantage of the power of the Octagon, a slight name change for the InControl Touch Pro would be in order.
How does “InControl Tap Out” strike you?