This month’s tragic pothole victim: Our Cars, Jaguar XE, CAR+ June 2016 | CAR Magazine

This month’s tragic pothole victim: Our Cars, Jaguar XE, CAR+ June 2016

Published: 01 May 2016 Updated: 18 May 2016

► Month 5 with our Jaguar XE

The Jaaag has been wounded in action. An atrociously large and deep pothole on a road – or what West Sussex Council sees fit to call a road – a few miles from home completely destroyed the driver’s side front tyre.

It had been one of those Fridays where everything that could have gone wrong did. One catastrophic traffic jam after another while driving halfway across the country for a meeting that was then cancelled at the last minute. Wallet-wiltingly expensive motorway lunch fodder and crappy Costa coffee. More stationary traffic on the return journey caused by mouth-breathers rubbernecking at an accident on the opposite carriageway. Endless lashing rain.

And then, just when hot pizza and cold gin and tonic were tantalisingly within reach, another traffic diversion that added a half hour loop to my trip and took me down The Road Of The Killer Pothole.

With an explosion and a slide that nearly put the XE into the ditch, the pothole ripped a jagged two-inch gash in the tyre sidewall. The car’s onboard display instantly and politely suggested that the tyre’s pressure was a tad low and checking all the tyres might be a good idea. These modern electronics…

This being a 21st Century car, the spare-wheel well usefully contained the battery and one of those wheezy contraptions that can only seal the most microscopic of punctures. Cue many expletives, and a call to Jaguar’s roadside assistance.

Ninety minutes later a very chipper chap, undaunted by the icy deluge, loaded the Jaguar onto his recovery truck and trundled us home.

A second call early on Saturday morning to the very efficient Jaguar roadside assistance people secured a second low-loader to take the XE to my nearest dealer – Harwoods in Chichester. Frustratingly, they didn’t have the correct sized tyre in stock, but ordered one for immediate delivery and promised the car’s tracking and alignment would also be checked. Even more frustratingly, they ordered the wrong tyre, which meant the car was only ready for collection on Monday evening, after the chunky £275 bill was settled. A pity then, that despite having it for three days, they didn’t find the time to give it a quick wash.


Logbook: Jaguar XE R-Sport 2.0 180PS

Price £34,775 
As tested £42,220 
Miles this month 1432
Total miles 10,777 
Our mpg 41.2 
Official mpg 67.3
Fuel this month £159.58 
Extra costs £275 (that tyre)

From the driving seat

+ Combination of on-road rarity and sharp R-Sport suit make the Jag a head-turner 
+ Handling section of notebook peppered with words like fluid, flowing, stable, secure
+ £42k? Feels and looks like it. Most of the time 
– Not hugely thrilled with tyre aftercare

Read more from the June 2016 issue of CAR magazine

By Ben Whitworth

Contributing editor, sartorial over-achiever, HANS device shirt collars