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BMW M5 and Jaguar XF R in the test: 5 liters, 500 hp - full power

Achim Hartmann
BMW M5 and Jaguar XF R in the test
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It is firmly rammed in, the pillar with the speed limit for fast cars. A maximum of 250 km /h is considered well-behaved, even the power departments of the major car manufacturers adhere to this with their top models, which could run well over 300 km /h without electronic shackles. Also the M5 by BMW , the second most powerful series BMW with its mighty ten-cylinder engine of all time represents. His young competitor is from England. Allow me to J aguar , Jaguar XF R. With a completely new eight-cylinder engine, it also cracks the 500 hp mark.

The BMW M5 has a V10 engine with a racing character

What the engine can do, the British demonstrated far away from serious civilization. On the great salt lake in the US state of Utah. Bonneville is the name of the race track where you can let it run. There an XF R, aerodynamically and, admittedly, handled with some care in terms of performance, managed just over 360 km /h. On the roads, including the few unlimited routes in Germany, the two are equally fast. The differences in the measured values ​​are so small that they cannot contribute anything to the question that concerns us as to which of the two super sedans is the more convincing design.

Different criteria are needed, whereby the different technical conception alone provides the basis. The BMW presents itself as a pure culture sports car that only lacks the right body to complete. At a time when ten-cylinder engines were the standard drive in Formula 1, M GmbH developed a V10 for him, the key figures of which had a racing character. Life starts here beyond 5,000 rpm.

The Jaguar XF R is very inconspicuous despite its high performance

Jaguar uses a machine in the XF that is far from being so consistently designed for sportiness is. The eight-cylinder is designed for more universal use, a high-speed concept like that at BMW was out of the question. The engine should not only cut a fine figure in the XF sedan, but also in the XK sports car and in the Range Rover .

Logical consequence: supercharging instead of extreme speeds. Jaguar uses a space-saving compressor which, in contrast to the double turbo, does not cause any problems if you read the Land Rover insert also has to accommodate front drive shafts. The supercharger forms a compact unit with the intercooler through which water flows and, thanks to the rotors with four blades, does not cause any noteworthy running noise, which is undoubtedly the most important advance. The Jaguar engine not only produces tremendous power, it also does so with the greatest possible inconspicuousness. His pronunciation remains cautious, even if the angry component of a V8 running under full load mixes in in the upper engine speed range.

The Jaguar XF R has a superior torque compared to the BMW M5

Because the compressor builds up pressure without delay, it is just above the Idle progressing impressively. The wave of torque, which is far superior to the M5, washes the XF away with the relentless thrust of a jet taking off. The driver doesn't have to do anything more than depress the accelerator pedal, while the M5 driver has to be careful with the high-performance engine. So shift down when steam is required, turn it down to around 8,000 revolutions, upshift. This results, however, only after a so-called launch control has been programmed, even slightly better acceleration than the Jaguar, and as a reward for the effort, the BMW driver enjoys the unique sound of a ten-cylinder.

At high engine speeds, the engine, which hums peacefully when driving in a bourgeois manner, develops an aggressive sound composed of intake and exhaust that makes the passengers forget that they are sitting in a spacious and comfortably equipped four-door car. With a high degree of professionalism, the M5 plays the role of a car for people who see sporty driving as an end in itself and are willing to admit that they enjoy it.

The BMW M5 comes with a sequential seven-speed gearbox

The most important difference between the two drive units in daily use is the power transmission. The Jaguar offers a conventional six-speed automatic with torque converter, which comes from the specialist ZF in Friedrichshafen and is also used in a similar form by BMW. But not in the M5. The M department is building an automated, sequentially shifted transmission with seven gears, but not with the still young double clutch technology. It has been five years since BMW proudly presented this transmission, and it is already from technical progressbeen overhauled.

If you drive fast on winding roads, you will learn to appreciate the spontaneous reactions and the lightning-fast gear changes, but even under these ideal circumstances, the inevitable interruption of traction when changing the gear ratio is a nuisance. Shifting comfort is not a priority here - this becomes even more apparent when the traffic conditions suggest leaving the transmission in position D to its own devices. As an automatic replacement, the M5 gearbox is only an emergency solution, as the occupants indicate with a friendly nod of their head at every shift.

The Jaguar XF R presents itself as a sedan with sports car performance

The automatic of the Jaguar, although also no longer a very young design, mimes on request The manual transmission is very skillful when the driver insists on setting the ratio with the paddles on the steering wheel. Which of course will remain the exception in practice, because with such a lush torque you don't have to call yourself a sloth foul of any sportiness if you leave Wandler & Company to their own devices. The gearbox reacts quickly and correctly, and its work is also made easier by the fact that the bull-strong engine is pretty indifferent in which gear to accelerate.

The Jaguar presents itself as a sedan with sports car performance and therefore pampers its driver with supple suspension comfort. Such concessions are alien to the BMW as a sports car in limousine format - it lets you feel the road, on short irregularities with annoying stumbling and on the long highway waves with dry and seamless vertical blows. On the other hand, under the extreme conditions of the driving dynamics tests, it shows the M-like advantage and proves with the free design of its ESP that it wants to give its driver a lot of freedom.

The combination of comfort and performance gives the Jaguar XF R victory

The Jaguar is no less safe to drive. It waggles around corners just as easily, but not quite as quickly; its chassis electronics intervene more emphatically and earlier in the selectable sport mode. Its steering is not quite as sensitive as that of the BMW, but it requires less effort. The comfortable commitment in which the Jaguar packs high performance ensures in a comparison that cannot be limited to the purely sporting aspects that it collects a few more points than the M5. You can pop the champagne corks in Britain - and with the new owner Tata in India. Until the cards are reshuffled. In 2011 the M-Crew presented the successor to the Sport 5 Series.


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