If you’re looking for something a bit more understated than a Mercedes-AMG or a BMW M car, two spectacular alternatives come in the form of the Audi RS4 Avant and the Jaguar XF R-Dynamic.
They have similar road presence, similar pricing, similar features, and cost half a million rand less than the newest C63 S AMG from Mercedes.
Both brands are reputable and have big followings, too, and both vehicles are the performance derivatives of the company’s bread-and-butter models.
In this head-to-head, we will be using the new Audi RS4 Avant TFSI Quattro and the Jaguar XF R-Dynamic HSE P300 AWD Automatic.
Performance is the game that these vehicles play, and their engines have been tuned accordingly.
Between the front wheels of the Audi sits a 2.9-litre, twin-turbo V6 engine that produces 331kW of power and 600Nm of torque.
The power is sent to all four wheels via the Audi Quattro system, an 8-speed tiptronic transmission manages the drive, and a weight of 1,820kg welds it to the tarmac.
This combination sees acceleration to 100km/h being done in 3.9 seconds.
On the the Jaguar, you get a 2.0-litre, 4-cylinder turbocharged motor that delivers a healthy 221kW and 400Nm.
It also receives an all-wheel drive system, translates power through an 8-speed automatic gearbox, and has a dry weight of 1,819kg.
The weaker engine ultimately ends up in a slower acceleration time, and the XF achieves the 0-100km/h sprint in 6.1 seconds.
If you like an estate, the choice is easy – if you don’t, it’s still easy.
The Audi RS4 Avant is an estate with a roofline that extends from the top of the windshield all the way to the back where it cuts off abruptly and ends at the exhaust pipes.
The Jaguar XF, on the other hand, is only available in a sedan configuration in South Africa.
It has a sloping roofline that meets the boot lid behind the rear headrests, and therefore considerably less cargo space.
While on the topic, the RS4 can fit 495 litres of cargo with the seats up, and at its max you can fill it with 1,495 litres of luggage.
The XF can fit 459 litres of cargo in its boot, with a maximum of 917 litres when the rear seats are folded flat.
The front of the RS4 is fitted with a singleframe grille in a honeycomb pattern, large air intakes with fog lights, and Audi matrix LED headlights.
Around the sides, accent lines forms a sill from front to rear, the pre-installed roof rails are visible, and 20-inch wheels provides a stylish look.
The rear side has an aggressively-styled bumper, large oval tailpipes, and LED taillights.
The XF receives a similarly-sized front bumper – albeit less mean-looking – and large air intakes and swooping LED headlamps.
It also sits on 20-inch wheels, has more chrome detailing, and features an attractive rear bumper.
This section is where these cars trades the most blows.
Safety and assistance features were placed in high regard, and both vehicles are fitted with:
- Hill assist
- Park assist systems
- Lane keep and change assist
- Cruise control with speed limiter
The Jaguar is not close to being done, however, as it gets emergency braking; blind spot, clear exit, and driver condition monitoring; trailer stability assist; emergency brake assist; and a rear traffic and collision monitor.
Inside the cabin of the RS4, you are greeted with electric leather seats with honeycomb stitching, an RS flat-bottom steering wheel, and two large displays on the dash and instrument cluster.
The Audi MMI navigation plus system is in charge of displaying information on the displays, and even has a special RS setting that is track focused.
The 10.1-inch display on the dashboard handles entertainment and GPS, and it offers additional functionalities in the form of Bluetooth, the Audi smartphone interface, and touch inputs.
A Bang & Olufsen surround sound system then provides a high-quality audio experience, and decorative inserts in “Aluminium Race” have been placed around the compartment.
The instrument cluster is also a large, 12.3-inch display, and is customisable depending on the drive mode that is selected.
More notable features include an electric bootlid, power-adjustable exterior mirrors, a reversible luggage compartment floor, and keyless entry and start.
Moving over to the Jaguar, an equally luxurious yet simplistic cabin awaits.
The Pivi Pro infotainment system provides a large screen on the centre control stack, 16-way electrically-adjustable front seats are fitted as standard, and a satin charcoal ash veneer adds fine details.
An 11.4-inch centre display enables Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and touch inputs – while sounds plays through a Meridian sound system.
The personalisable digital instrument cluster displays critical vehicle information, and the R-Dynamic steering wheel makes usability a breeze.
Vehicle abilities were improved with electrical components, too, and keyless entry, a powered boot lid, rain-sensing wipers, and electrically-adjustable wing mirrors are included.
At the beginning of February, the new Audi RS4 Avant TFSI Quattro went on sale at a price of R1,296,000.
With this you get a standard 5-year/100,000km Audi freeway plan.
The Jaguar XF R-Dynamic HSE P300 AWD Automatic comes in as the top spec model of the range, and has a price of R1,202,800.
This gets you a 5-year/100,000km Jaguar Care Plan.