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yeti

Original Poster:

10,274 posts

161 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
A thread about the Evora on another forum I frequent, a poster on there, well respected, he races, owns a garage, his thoughts were:

"On my forecourt now I have various Ferraris, Porsche, Jag, Aston etc and if I were to take a car for a burn it would be the Evora without a question. Ferrari's are too skittish on UK roads, Porsches patter at the front and the quicker ones are too stiff, the Aston's are rubbish, the jags are great but TC isn't right."

On another thread, same author: "Astons are pretty flaky and not great to drive, the jags are one of my favourite cars... Db9 is a good step forward (over DB7) but it's a light year behind an equivalent xkr. Don't get me wrong, the astons are lovely things, but more of an ornament than a driving experience."

I challenged him about whether he had an axe to grind, he said not and I believe him. Assuming these are genuinely his thoughts, could he be right? Have the Gaydon era cars slipped behind the equivalent and much, much cheaper Jaguars?

Last time I looked at an XKR was at an event at Kensington Olympia where Jag had a presence. From a distance, the XKR looked great, close up it was a mish-mash of parts bin kit and small failures in attention to detail - a screwed on spoiler, ugly handles, a silly aerial, poor stitching, cheap plastics. Every Aston I see looks like the hand built dream-car it is supposed to be, it looks like what it is, a car that costs half as much again.

The last Jag I drove was my 2004 XKR 4.2 cabrio, which was lovely but beaten in every way by the DB7 Vantage I replaced it with. Without the image they may or may not suffer, has the 'poor man's Aston' actually overtaken the Aston with this new iteration? We know their R&D budget is huge by comparison, but even so, the Gaydon VH platform was, I thought, without parallel at the price, before we get into carbon monocoques. The V12 is old tech, but strong and torquey, the V8 engine is pretty modern though suffers in power comparison against the SC Jags but the latest 430bhp with 7 speeds is fine for a GTs engine. Though when Jag has 520bhp for the same cash...

What see ye Astoneers? Genuinely interested and as I said, not taking into account the Jag's image, is it a better car or even drawing near? Many are saying yes. Obviously we're hugely partisan, but try and put that to one side. I'm curious and will freely admit to being a Jaguar fan, I've had 3 and will have many more in my life smile

George H

12,533 posts

50 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
The only reason anyone would buy the Jag XK is because they couldn't afford an Aston. Quite simple smile

jas xjr

8,400 posts

125 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
i am a big jaguar fan , but i hate the front end of the current xkr .
i would rather buy an older aston instead

Lunablack

3,473 posts

48 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
To be honest, I couldn't give a monkeys one way or the other what anyone else thinks about Astons....or even if a jag, Porsche, Ferrari or anything else is better or not....

To me the ASTON MARTIN has always been an aspirational goal.... For 30 years I said "one day I will own an Aston"..

I never said that about a Jag or anything else for that matter..... In fact I've never given any Jag a second glance.... It's just a posh car for old blokes in my eyes, like a Merc....smile

yorkieboy

1,630 posts

61 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
XK Is more reliable and cheaper to service. I prefer a XK to a DB9.
Advertisement

pilgrim7777

259 posts

74 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
After I sold my Vantage last year I drove a number of vehicles including Jags and various others. I can only comment that the current DB9 MY2011 with all the new suspension ADS is a fantastic car indeed I must have been impressed otherwise I would not have bought one. I really would like to know what exactly was the problem, "the comment its rubbish" just does not hack it, the only thing I could discern is the understeer into corners when pushing hard. But that maybe my style of driving. Although I have been given plenty of instruction.
What the hell was he driving....was he conscious while driving.
The Vantage is great sports car but not for me after four years.

Edited by pilgrim7777 on Saturday 4th February 17:24

yeti

Original Poster:

10,274 posts

161 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
yorkieboy said:
XK Is more reliable and cheaper to service. I prefer a XK to a DB9.
Cheaper to service I'll agree with. But more reliable? It's not like Gaydon cars have a reputation for unreliability or are Jags nigh-on perfect now? My 2004 XKR was never out of the garage, but then again nor was my DB7!

Highrisedrifter

754 posts

40 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
Lunablack said:
To be honest, I couldn't give a monkeys one way or the other what anyone else thinks about Astons....or even if a jag, Porsche, Ferrari or anything else is better or not....

To me the ASTON MARTIN has always been an aspirational goal.... For 30 years I said "one day I will own an Aston"..

I never said that about a Jag or anything else for that matter..... In fact I've never given any Jag a second glance.... It's just a posh car for old blokes in my eyes, like a Merc....smile
True for me too. Growing up, my dad had a succession of Jags and Astons and so I aspired to own both of them. Now that i've done it, I am happy.

I have dabbled in many other prestige marques over the years but nothing, I repeat 'nothing', comes close to the grin factor of my Vantage. I'm not a racing driver, so I seriously doubt I will be able to come even close to the edge of the Vantage's capabilities so for me the performance and driving experience of the Vantage is more than enough. Although I do intend on the Aston PDC later in the year to improve my handling of the car.

I have also put a deposit down on one of the new Jaguar CX-16s to run alongside the Aston next year as my good lady quite fancies one. She's umming and aahing over convertible or coupe at the mo but we still have a while to decide. At around £50k, it's quite well priced for such a car so it will be interesting to see what the CX-16 and Vantage are like driving back to back.

I'm not a fan of the XK model in the same way that I prefer the Vantage over the DB9 in looks.

yeti

Original Poster:

10,274 posts

161 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
And chaps, I did say try to leave out comments about image or relative aspirationality of the marques!

Is the current XKR a better car than a Vantage/DB9? Does it drive, handle, steer and brake better? Is it better built and more reliable?

I know what I'd rather have because I have it, nor will any outcome affect my decision - I'm genuinely curious as to whether Jaguar have collosally upped their game or are Aston that far behind?

As Aston types we don't really expect our cars to outperform Ferraris, they have a different raison d'etre. But Jaguar are a genuine rival at 2/3 the price. We believe our cars are better, removing emotion from the equation; are they?

Edited by yeti on Saturday 4th February 17:34

pilgrim7777

259 posts

74 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
Well my only comment in comparison is I have been looking for a F430 but I do find them very skittish as stable mate for the DB9. But will I drive it much well a more livable with stable mate might be a Porsche but again. It would not be a Jag, horses for courses....

Lunablack

3,473 posts

48 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
yeti said:
And chaps, I did say try to leave out comments about image or relative aspirationality of the marques!
No you didn't, you said "obviously we're all partisan, but try to put that to one side" ........... Well I triedsmile

As for whether the jag is better than an Aston..... I've no ideasmile

TDIPLC

467 posts

94 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
Yeti, I haven't seen the thread you mentioned but would that be Chris Randall at Hoffmanns by any chance?

yeti

Original Poster:

10,274 posts

161 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
Without naming names... Err, yes smile

As said, I don't believe he has an axe to grind, I'm genuinely curious as to the source of the comments.

As also mentioned above, I don't drive at 10/10ths and would be backwards in the hedge if I tried to, a modified DB9 is all I need. I couldn't exploit any more from a car. Randy can!

steveatesh

1,798 posts

50 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
This really depends upon what the word "better" actually means to individuals - its subjective rather than the cold objectivity of numbers. For me I don't think you can separate out the numbers from the other aspects of owning any particular car - what makes some people chose a Corsa over a Fiesta or vice versa, for example, we all make buying decisions based upon our own unique beliefs and values and you can't separate emotions from them.

When I bought the AM 2 years ago I was aware then the Jag was being described as "technically better" than the AM, but it didn't stop me buying the Vantage because the whole AM V8V car was "better" for me I felt (and still do).

Having said that I don't believe that AM can rest on its laurels and that the brand name alone will not continue to sell cars. As we have said on other posts the technical performance must keep up or exceed other manufacturers for the brand to continue into the longer term future.

That means keeping pace on the numbers, handling and especially reliability whilst still being an Aston.

With Jags R+D budget, I can't help but feel AM have a fight on their hands!

Guycord

505 posts

59 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
yeti said:
A thread about the Evora on another forum I frequent, a poster on there, well respected, he races, owns a garage, his thoughts were:

"On my forecourt now I have various Ferraris, Porsche, Jag, Aston etc and if I were to take a car for a burn it would be the Evora without a question. Ferrari's are too skittish on UK roads, Porsches patter at the front and the quicker ones are too stiff, the Aston's are rubbish, the jags are great but TC isn't right."

On another thread, same author: "Astons are pretty flaky and not great to drive, the jags are one of my favourite cars... Db9 is a good step forward (over DB7) but it's a light year behind an equivalent xkr. Don't get me wrong, the astons are lovely things, but more of an ornament than a driving experience."

I challenged him about whether he had an axe to grind, he said not and I believe him. Assuming these are genuinely his thoughts, could he be right? Have the Gaydon era cars slipped behind the equivalent and much, much cheaper Jaguars?
A common tale I have often rattled out goes something like this:-
Visiting my parents from time to time in a village near Manchester, I often go with Dad to the pub next door but one. Dad peels off an has his usual gripe with his usual OAP drinking budds, leaving me oft, with the village idiots, the wannabe Schumachers I was at primary school with and whom the nearest thing that they will ever get to driving an Aston will be their Landowners David Brown tractor.

Usually goes like this....

Village idiot........."that your Aston then?"
Me...................."Yep"
Village idiot........."but wot you buy d'hat for, shudda gotten na Porsche"
Me...................."a-ha"
Village idiot........."cos its got.........." etc...recites specs.
Me...................."well I'll tell the reason why my old friend. The thing is that once I'd stop Wcensoredking over the Top Gear Magazine in WH Smiths, I decided to go into an Aston Dealer and slap a hundred-plus big-one's on the man's desk, pick-up the keys and drive-off. I did this in a sane and collective manner having discounted all other models from Ferarri, Porsche, Lambo, Audi and others to name just a few"

Me...................."now in your view, I may have made a mistake. But then again, I'm driving an Aston and your still Wcensoredking over car magazines".

I then find I can then continue to enjoy a pint in peace and quiet until Dad gets back.








quench

54 posts

32 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
Hello all! An interesting thread for my introductory post! I drove a 4.7 V8V for just over 3 years, own an XFR as a daily driver, and have driven the XKR, but not the DB9. My foray into British marques is fairly recent, and I have longer experience with German marques.

In terms of build quality (materials, finish) the Astons are clearly ahead of Jag, with a more expensive and bespoke feel. At first glance, the new Jags compare favourably with the Germans (my benchmark for the XFR is my previous RS6), although deeper investigation reveals they are not as well built (look inside the trunk/boot or rear seating area). Stylistically, IMO Aston rules, and the Jags are way ahead of the Germans, but that's entirely subjective.

Driving-wise, the XFR is the best daily driver I have ever owned. Bar none. This even takes into account Canadian winters, now with a RWD car benchmarked against my previous AWD car. The Jag flows over the road and has a suppleness and lightness of feel that are quite astounding for such a large and heavy car. The steering felt too light at first, but it has a delicacy that make the car extremely relaxing to drive, yet very easy to place on the road when pushing harder.

The V8V was the most difficult car to drive smoothly that I have ever owned. At times, this was part of the charm, but at other times it was annoying. It had the sports suspension, and IMO it was a poor setup. The car rode too harshly, yet rolled too much, and had a disturbing disconnect between the front and rear. H&R springs helped, but did not solve the situation. The manual transmission was challenging, to put it kindly. I liked the steering and found the pedal effort required during braking a refreshing change from most over-servoed systems. The throttle response was just awful - lazy, lazy, lazy. The car certainly felt more sporting than the XFR, largely due to the harsh ride and heavier controls. But it wouldn't have seen which way the XFR went on most roads. Conversely, its capability on track was a pleasant surprise (there, the tables were decidedly turned on the XFR).

Is it fair to compare the XFR to the V8V, as they are such different cars? Well, I did not find the XKR to be substantially different in feel to the XFR. Now, the DB9 might be a better benchmark for the XKR, but I haven't driven one (and I'm sure its V12 sets it apart from the V8V). And, in fairness, the XFR is a daily driver and the V8V was not.

Reliability: the V8V had a fair number of issues, which proved quite annoying, but none left me stranded. What irritated most was that some were clearly related to known design flaws (leaking rear lights, for example). The XFR has had a few less faults, but still more than I have had with any German car. For the ultimate irony, my Exige, which gets regularly abused on track, has been close to faultless.

So, in summary, I find the XFR a better car than the V8V, when driving feel is given most consideration (which, IMO, it should be). But I haven't mentioned the most subjective thing of all - how a car makes you feel, and there, for me, the V8V was king. Some people buy into this concept, but others will dismiss it, and say that marques like Aston rely on it, in order to get away with making an inferior product. Well, the world would be a boring place if everyone thought the same way!

steveatesh

1,798 posts

50 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
Quench - cracking first post!

mikey k

9,486 posts

102 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
I went to the launch of the 5.0 XKR drove them round the Gaydon test track.
As a piece of engineering they are great and very quick.
I hade a mooch round the current XKR and an XKRS in the week.
The execution and attention to detail is lacking.
The piano black finish looks cheap
The front bumper looks like a piece from Halfords styling catalogue
The "carbon fibre" leather looks and feels really rather rubbish
Optioned up is close to the cost of a Vantage S
I know I'm secure in my decision wink

Now if Aston got that engine wink
JLR have done some great work and the TATA buy out is working well for them.

Neil1300R

4,139 posts

64 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
steveatesh said:
Quench - cracking first post!
+1 clap
Love the way its the Aston that wins out, even with everything you saw as a negative.
Not driven a new Jag, they do look good, but again owning an Aston was / is a 30 year dream, and never been disappointed with it. The only downside is after 3 years I fancy a change. - Which Aston to get! laugh

blueg33

13,620 posts

110 months

[news] 
Saturday 4th February 2012 quote quote all
Mate of mine has an XKRS and a 2011 DB9

In his opinion the XKRS whips the DB9 as a driving machine but the quality isn't quite there.

Which car does he always drive - XKRS in his words "The Aston is too boring"

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