When it comes to customer satisfaction surveys, two brands rule the roost - Jaguar and Lexus.
Jaguar is a British institution that's very much in a second heyday at the moment and when it comes to rapid, premium luxury cars, British buyers might not consider anything else. However the Lexus LS - Japan's only true luxury car available to UK buyers - is the perfect rival.
In terms of the luxury on offer, the two cars seem superficially similar - with all the leather, suede, wood and metal that you could possibly want. It's certainly the case that Jaguar's interiors are amongst the most highly-rated in the industry, but then so is the cabin of any Lexus. With the takumi craftsmen ensuring the highest quality finish, Lexus interiors feature techniques you'll find in luxury yachts!
On the technological front, the LS is always the car you should look at to see what's coming to other manufacturers. The first car in the world to feature satellite navigation was a Lexus LS - in 1998! Features taken for granted now like adaptive air suspension also made their market debut in the LS.
In the current generation, the Lexus LS460 was the first automatic eight-speed transmission on a luxury car, though this is now available on the XJ too. What the XJ doesn't feature is the Climate Concierge system - a climate control technology that uses infrared, monitoring the face temperatures of the vehicle's occupants and automatically adjusting the climate control zones automatically to keep them at the most comfortable temperature.
There's two engines available for the Lexus LS, though only one broadly correspond an XJ's options: the 4.6-litre V8 Lexus LS460 which compares to the 3.0 supercharged V6 in the Jaguar
This 388hp unit in the Lexus will propel the LS to 60mph in 5.7s - slightly ahead of the equivalent 340hp XJ which does it in 5.9s - though it's a little behind in the fuel economy stakes at 26mpg compared to 31mpg.
In the XJ you'll also find diesel V6 and a supercharged V8 petrol option, but Lexus has another unique trick - the LS600h. This is the world's first full hybrid V8 car, with a 5-litre V8 backed up by a 221hp electric motor to produce a peak power output of 445hp.
While the XJ might be considered the default choice of the British luxury car buyer, the LS is more than a match!
For more information on the Lexus LS, click here: https://www.inchcapelexus.co.uk/cars/lexus-range/ls/