The release of a new Jaguar is always a cause for excitement and the sleek, powerful XKR was no exception to that rule. As a somewhat overdue replacement for the dated but classic XJ-S and the beautiful but poorly marketed XK8, the XK range had some big shoes to fill. The first XKs appeared in dealerships in early 2006 and were an immediate winner with press and public alike, neatly straddling the fine line between classic Jaguar styling and up to date innovation. The range-topping supercharged version, the XKR, came along later that year.
Jaguar designer Ian Callum has included a respectful nod to Jaguar's heyday, with the front end boasting an oval grille [reminiscent of the old E-Type](http://www.raccars.co.uk/blogs/unanswered-questions-from-the-motoring-world-ross-burrell/tribute-malcolm-sayer-and-the-jaguar-e-type/1087/). The Jaguar XKR retains the classic Jag's elegance but adds a visual athleticism backed up by an immense 420bhp, 4.2 litre V8, revised to a 510 bhp 5.0 litre in 2009. Other updates at that time included a new trademarked gearshift, the JaguarDrive Selector, a centre console rotary dial to replace the traditional stick.
There are two versions available, coupe or convertible, plus a luxury Portfolio edition in 2007. There was an optional Speed Pack from 2010 that altered the electronic speed limiter from 155mph to 174mph, plus some extra style elements and colour variations and in the same year a limited edition approved used Jaguar XKR 75 featuring deluxe styling and performance enhancing elements. An extra-supercharged version, the Jaguar XKR-S came along in 2011 that will take you from 0-60mph in an eye-watering 4.2 seconds. Uprated suspension and better aerodynamics helped to make this the fastest ever Jaguar with the lowest emissions figures in its class.
Bang for your buck
The used Jaguar XKR interior exhibits all the refined luxury and craftsmanship you would expect of a Jaguar. It is more practical than the XK8, with a relatively roomy cabin and superior luggage space, but every bit as elegant. Gone is the splash of wood across the dash in favour of a more restrained fascia with a choice of wood or aluminium detailing. There are a number of instances of a rather cheesy 'R' insignia on the gear knob, steering wheel and the headrests of the rather comfortable, laterally supported front seats, or plush softgrain leather detailing with the Luxury Sports pack.
Instruments feature white illumination with red pointers, while the standard seats are heated and cooled with 16-way adjustment, memory settings and adjustable lateral bolsters. A 7-inch touchscreen offers you control facilities for the audio system, satellite navigation, climate control and Bluetooth.
The convertible has one of the most impressive hoods out there, both in fit and performance with road noise is almost undetectable. It is invisible when closed and opens to a flush fitting under the rear bodywork within 18 seconds at the touch of a button.
That supple, ultra-sleek exterior is complemented by 20-inch alloys as standard, performance brakes and a quad exhaust. The whole package screams quality – or it would were it not too upmarket to raise its voice.
What you'll pay
Residual values live up to the Jaguar XKR's amazing reputation – bad if you're buying, great if you're selling. You're looking at more than £50,000 for an '06 plate coupe and about £5,000 more for a convertible.
What to check
A car of this quality needs to be well-looked after, so stick to full service histories and main dealerships. Mechanically, however, the whole XK range has proved to be sound.
A replacement exhaust system costs about £595 – that's without the catalyst. Front shock absorbers go for £110 a pair and a set of front pads is £100. Alternators and starter motors are both in the region of £300.
How it drives
An ultra- light, aluminium bodyshell, up to the minute six-speed sequential shift gearbox with three driving modes and all the best in modern automotive technology combine to make the used Jaguar XKR for sale the ride of your life. The pull into your seat could give you a concussion. Drive mode is the best of automatic transmissions for everyday motoring, Sports mode is a more dynamic and responsive setting with adaptive software to react to driver behaviour and road conditions, while Hill Recognition mode balances the torque ratios for the most appropriate power output for the incline or decline encountered. Twin air inlets, a Variable Inlet Camshaft Timing system, variable valve timings and a host of other futuristic innovations give an effortless feel to what is in fact astonishing performance. Fortunately the XKR's brakes are as effective as its accelerator pedal and the rear-wheel drive handles tracks and corners with equal aplomb. It's the stuff dreams are made of.