Jaguar XE R-Dynamic Black P300 AWD 2021 Review

We drive the Jaguar XE R-DYNAMIC P300 AWD on a Road Test Review

Jaguar XE follows the long tradition of comfortable luxury saloons from Jaguar. The “entry” level sedan, the R-Dynamic Black we are driving this week is an elegant, comfortable vehicle that surprisingly comes with the added benefit of AWD drivetrain.

2021 Jaguar XE P300 R-Dynamic AWD exterior front qtr The Jaguar XE R-Dynamic sits in the same segment as the Audi A4 Quattro, Peugeot 508GT, Lexus IS, Mercedes Benz C Class, BMW 3 Series and the Genesis G70

Updated in September 2021 the latest XE Saloon embodies all that is good about the brand.

2021 Jaguar XE P300 R-Dynamic AWD exterior profile

What does the Jaguar XE R-Dynamic Black look like?

One thing Jaguar has always done is produce well-proportioned elegant saloons and the smaller XE is no exception.

From the wide bold black grill through long sweeping profile lines to the short tail it all seems to flow. The grille features a lattice mesh design with a full, curved profile – a visual cue shared with the all-electric I-PACE

All XE R-Dynamic models are available with the enhanced Black Exterior Pack (fitted as standard on the R-Dynamic Black) which delivers a stealthier appearance with bespoke elements finished in Gloss Black.

These include the grille mesh, grille surround, lower air intake surrounds, side vents, window surround and new for 21MY, black exterior badging, dual tailpipes with 84mm finishers.

Also the XE has premium LED headlights with signature DRL – Includes Auto High Beam Assist (AHBA), automatic levelling and rear taillights with Directional Animated Indicators LED taillights

2021 Jaguar XE P300 R-Dynamic AWD wheels and tyres

Stunning gloss black 19” Style 5031, 5 Split-Spoke, alloys with 225/40 R19 performance tyres and red brake callipers enhance the sporty appeal.

The XE R-Dynamic Black is available with the following colour palette: Santorini Black, Yulong White, Firenze Red, Blue Fire Blue or Eiger Grey

2021 Jaguar XE P300 R-Dynamic AWD interior drivers area

What is the inside of the XE R-Dynamic Black like?

The first thing you notice is the contrast of black leather dash and cream leather seats. Sit inside and the front seats are very comfortable with multiple electronic adjustments including lumbar adjustment. Heating and ventilation are optional.

There is plenty of seat slide for my tall frame (at the expense of rear knee room) and the thick leather steering wheel feels great in the hands. It also frames the 12.3-inch HD Interactive Driver Display nicely as well. A bright HUD adds to the overall functionality

2021 Jaguar XE P300 R-Dynamic AWD interior HUD

There are the usual controls on the three spoke wheel, along with transmission paddles. The dash is a traditional design with twin outer dials and central configurable display with lots of choices.

There is a small but handy central storage console, twin cup holders then the central stack. The 5.5 inch lower screen is devoted to the A/C functions, the 10” Touch Pro top screen is inset with excellent light touch functionality.  The touch controls on the lower screen and steering wheel require a more definite approach.

2021 Jaguar XE P300 R-Dynamic AWD interior charging tray

A couple of things to note, the charging tray is neatly tucked away in the front of the central tunnel and the transmission lever is a delight to use.

All around visibility is pretty good, but one thing I did notice was that the ‘B’ pillars tend to slope in at the top and a few times I bumped my head on them. The sunroof however doesn’t seem to intrude on headroom though.

2021 Jaguar XE P300 R-Dynamic AWD interior rear seats

Rear seats while comfortable are tight on leg and knee room, especially with taller front occupants. This is not unusual for this size vehicle though. They are really designed for two people only. There are are air vents for passenger comfort.

2021 Jaguar XE P300 R-Dynamic AWD interior boot area

Boot room is tight and while it has a flat load space and tie down points, the short tail means that you are reaching in for items towards the front of the car. It’s also not very tall either. These are the reasons why lift backs and SUVs are so popular.

2021 Jaguar XE P300 R-Dynamic AWD interior central stack

XE R-Dynamic Black Features

Even though the XE is priced less than $70,000 it comes with a surprising list of standard features that include:

  • 12-Way Electric Front Seats with 2-Way Manual Headrests
  • Fixed rear seat with centre armrest
  • R-Dynamic branded leather steering wheel with Satin Chrome gearshift paddles
  • Heated, Electric, Power Fold Door Mirrors with Approach Lights and Auto-Dimming Driver Side
  • Two-zone Climate Control along with Enhanced Cabin Air Ionisation
  • Gloss Black Trim Finisher
  • Metal treadplates with R-Dynamic branding
  • Ebony Morzine headlining
  • Bright Metal Pedals
  • 3-flash lane change indicators
  • Auto-dimming interior rear-view mirror
  • Sunvisors with illuminated vanity mirrors
  • Start-up sequence with movement, dials and lighting
  • Outside temperature gauge
  • Cabin lighting
  • Overhead lighting console
  • Rear air vents
  • Mist sensing
  • Shopping bag hook
  • Centre console with armrest
  • Luggage tie-downs in loadspace
  • Electric windows with one-touch open/close and anti-trap
  • Heated rear window
  • Rain sensing windscreen wipers
  • Approach illumination
  • Boot Lid Spoiler
  • ECO driving style assistant

2021 Jaguar XE P300 R-Dynamic AWD interior central connectivity

Infotainment and Connectivity features include:

  • Meridian™ Sound System – 400W, 13 speakers which provides clear, crisp sound,
  • Pivi Pro (Connected) dual-sim infotainment
  • Digital Audio Broadcast (DAB) radio
  • Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ (not wireless unfortunately for Apple CarPlay )
  • Interactive Driver Display
  • 12V power socket(s), USB socket(s), Audio auxiliary-in socket
  • Dynamic Volume Control
  • iPod® integration
  • Bluetooth® connectivity
  • Bluetooth® streaming
  • Second-generation Activity Key
  • Software-Over-The-Air capability for updates

Options:

  • Technology Pack $2,160
    • Wireless Charger
    • Smart Rear View Mirror
    • Head-up Display
    • 10” Touch Pro Duo
  • Sliding Panoramic Roof $1,900
  • Privacy Glass $650
  • 40:20:40 Folding Rear Seats with Centre Headrest & Armrest $460

2021 Jaguar XE P300 R-Dynamic AWD engine

XE R-Dynamic Black Engine and Drivetrain

The XE P300 is powered by the 2.0L 4 cylinder twin scroll turbocharger Ingenium petrol engine that produces power of 221kW @ 5,500rpm and torque of 400Nm @ 1,500-4,500 rpm.

This runs through an eight speed automatic transmission to all four wheels with AWD. It operates predominantly as a rear wheel drive with drive going to the front wheels when needed.

2021 Jaguar XE P300 R-Dynamic AWD interior AWD functionality

Weighing only 1,690 kg, this combination will run from 0-100kmh in 5.9 seconds and top out at 250kmh while sipping fuel at an ADR rate of 6.8L/100km (Combined).

We averaged 8.4l/100k on our weeks drive in real world conditions.

2021 Jaguar XE P300 R-Dynamic AWD Drivng experience

XE R-Dynamic Black Driving Experience.

Often smaller saloons like the XE can be a little choppy over rough surfaces. Not so the XE, it always felt nicely composed.

The XE is quiet, smooth and directly responsive to steering input. It’s also deceptively quick. You find yourself looking down and realising you are going much faster than you thought as it’s so smooth.

While 5.9 seconds from 0-100kmh isn’t sports car numbers it’s sporty and when combined with responsive steering and handling, its makes for an engaging drive.

2021 Jaguar XE P300 R-Dynamic AWD central transmission area

The XE is nimble around corners, cruises effortlessly on the freeway and with the AWD it grips way better than you expect. Bonus is that with AWD you can take it to the snow without snow chains. (in NSW). The selectable drive mode allows for a choice between dynamic, comfort, ice/snow or eco.

Overall the XE is actually quite pleasant to drive.

Couple of little functionality things to note. The windscreen washer provides complete coverage, LED headlights both low and high beam are really good along with spot on calibration for the high beam dipping function and for a driver like me who does so many freeway kilometres, you can actually select to have the radar function on cruise control operating or not. That is a BIG tick from me.

2021 Jaguar XE P300 R-Dynamic AWD interior reverse camera

XE R-Dynamic Black Safety Features

As you may expect the XE comes with a five star ANCAP safety rating along with a long list oif safety features including:

  • All Surface Progress Control (ASPC)
  • JaguarDrive Control
  • Electric Power Assisted Steering (EPAS)
  • Dynamic Stability Control (DSC)
  • Torque Vectoring by Braking (TVBB)
  • 355mm front and 325mm rear brakes
  • Electric Parking Brake (EPB)
  • Brake pad wear indicator
  • Emergency Brake Assist
  • Speed proportional steering
  • Hill Launch Assist
  • 3D Surround Camera Includes Forward Traffic Detection and Forward Vehicle Guidance
  • Adaptive Cruise Control Includes Forward Alert, Queue Assist, Intelligent Emergency Braking
  • Emergency Braking Includes Low Speed Manoeuvre Assist, Vehicle and Pedestrian
  • Blind Spot Assist Includes Closing Vehicle Sensing (CVS), Blind Spot Monitor (BSM)
  • Keyless Entry and Push Button Start
  • Front airbags, with passenger seat occupant detector, Front side airbags, Full length side window curtain airbag,
  • Driver Condition Monitor,
  • Lane Keep Assist,
  • Front and Rear Parking Aid,
  • Rear Collision Monitor,
  • Rear Traffic Monitor,
  • Traffic Sign Recognition and Adaptive Speed Limiter,
  • Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS),
  • Interior front door handles with separate locking switches,
  • Power operated child locks,
  • Rear ISOFIX

2021 Jaguar XE P300 R-Dynamic AWD exterior front grill

XE R-Dynamic Black final thoughts  

With the prevalence of SUVs these days its refreshing to drive an elegant saloon. The Jaguar XE R-Dynamic Black P300 AWD is a surprise. Its quite sporty and engaging to drive, more for two people rather than a family, but ideal for daily driving as well as long touring holidays.

Its actually pretty good value with a heap of standard features. However like many European cars, the options list is long and expensive. But unless you have a particular need, there isn’t too much that I would add.

Yep, I actually really enjoyed my time in the XE R-Dynamic P300 AWD. 

What is good?

What is not so good?

  • Elegant design
  • Engaging drive, ride and handling
  • Standard price point

2021 Jaguar XE P300 R-Dynamic AWD dynamic mode

Model   

Jaguar XE R-Dynamic Black P300 AWD 

Model Price From $64,704 MLP* PAT $69,874 MLP*
Engine 2.0L Twin Turbo 4 Cyl. Ingenium Petrol
Drivetrain 8 speed Sports AT AWD
Power 221kW @ 5500rpm
Torque 400Nm @ 1500-4500rpm
Safety Five Star  ANCAP (tested 2015)
CO2 Emissions 157g/km
Economy ADR / Tank 6.8 L/100km (ADR combined)  8.4 L/100km over our test / 63L
Servicing 5 Years or 102,000km (whichever comes first) Service plan $1950
Warranty 5yr/ Unlimited km with 5 Yr. conditional roadside assist

 *MLP Includes GST and LCT but excluding statutory charges, dealer costs and dealer delivery. See your dealer for RDAP. Does not include price of options. Some features mentioned in the article are options.

2021 Jaguar XE P300 R-Dynamic AWD exterior rear qtr

Overall Rating    

83/100

Behind the Wheel 9
Comfort 9
Equipment 8
Performance 9
Ride and Handling 9
Practicality 7
Fit for Purpose 8
Design / Style 8
Technology / connectivity 8
Value for Money 8

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  • 9/10
    Behind the Wheel - 9/10
  • 9/10
    Comfort - 9/10
  • 8/10
    Equipment - 8/10
  • 9/10
    Performance - 9/10
  • 9/10
    Ride and Handling - 9/10
  • 7/10
    Practicality - 7/10
  • 8/10
    Fit for Purpose - 8/10
  • 8/10
    Design / Style - 8/10
  • 8/10
    Technology / connectivity - 8/10
  • 8/10
    Value for Money - 8/10
8.3/10

Summary

With the prevalence of SUVs these days its refreshing to drive an elegant saloon. The Jaguar XE R-Dynamic Black P300 AWD is a surprise. Its quite sporty and engaging to drive, more for two people rather than a family, but ideal for daily driving as well as long touring holidays.

Its actually pretty good value with a heap of standard features. However like many European cars, the options list is long and expensive. But unless you have a particular need, there isn’t too much that I would add. 

Yep, I actually really enjoyed my time in the XE R-Dynamic P300 AWD. 

About Rob Fraser 1785 Articles
Rob Fraser – General dogsbody & Director Rob is the founder of the business. He constantly mutters something about way too many red wines one evening being to blame. Often known for taking the 4WD in the driveway over the sports car, he has travelled pretty much everywhere in Australia and when he is bored goes for a drive. He first learned to drive on the farm in a left hand drive WW11 Jeep when he was 11, and was hooked on 4WDriving way back then. In addition to 4WD he is an avid motoring enthusiast and has maintained a strong interest in the industry ever since his teens. He has owned way too many cars in his time as well. Having previously lived at the top of corporate life he retired in 2000 and hasn’t put a suit and tie on since. Cars are his passion so why not have a business doing what you love he figures. He has towed either a caravan or camper trailer to most parts of Australia, has run guided tours for camper trailers’ and instructed drivers in off road towing.