Few cars define luxury as completely as Jaguar. Of course that’s what Jaguar wants you to think, but there’s also a disadvantage to being so closely affiliated with the finer things in life. That upscale association causes most people to think Jaguar is beyond their means even if they’re shopping for higher priced cars. Plus, many lower priced brands like Lincoln, Buick, Cadillac and Infiniti are packed with high-end features, the kind you might find in a Bentley or Jaguar. Soft leather, endless entertainment options, name brand audio systems, heated seats, automatic cruise control have become so common that even the Toyota Sienna has them.

But there’s more to a great car than just having the most stuff. Certainly the Toyota Sienna is great as a family hauler that has a little class but no one would mistake it for a Jaguar XJ. Judged on its own merits, the Jag is a remarkable car for a number of reasons.

If you’re shopping for a high end, luxury sedan here are five reasons to buy the 2011 Jaguar XJ.

1. Value - Believe it or not value is a great reason to buy the XJ. At a starting price of $72,000 the XJ is thousands less than similar luxury sedans from Mercedes Benz and BMW. The long wheelbase XJ L is a little more expensive but still less than the competition.

2. Interior Luxury - The second reason is a remarkably elegant interior – the hand stitched leather, super comfortable seats and even the unique gear selector all give the XJ a very distinguished feel – even the air vents are a work of art. There’s plenty of chrome trim and every aspect of the XJ’s cabin has a distinct and hand crafted feel.

3. Excellent Audio System - If you love music, you’ll want the Jag XJ because of its available Bower’s and Wilkins 1,200 watt, 20 speaker surround sound audio system. The speakers are perfectly placed for the best sound quality. With deep, clean lows and lifelike highs, it’s hard to beat this sound system. The system also handles your iPod, has a built in hard drive for storing ripped music and it’s all accessed via touch screen.

4. Unique Style - The Jaguar XJ’s super sleek body is another reason to pick this car over other full size luxury sedans. The recently redesigned XJ looks less formal and much sleeker than every XJ’s before it; it’s stately but in a clean, youthful and contemporary way. The look from the front and rear is an effortless combination of modern style and old world charm.

5. Great Sounding V8 Engine - Finally, the XJ’s stellar V8 is another reason to buy this big Jaguar sedan. The 5.0 liter engine packs 385 hp and is one of the best sounding V8s around. A supercharged version is offered as well, it makes 470 hp and the Super Sports model is good for a blacktop scorching 510 hp. But the XJ is about more than numbers, while many big luxury cars are content to hush their cars, Jag lets it all hang out with a very distinct and slightly aggressive sound. That alone might reason to buy the new Jaguar XJ.

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Brian Moody has been an automotive writer and presenter for more than 10 years. He has contributed to such media outlets as CNBC, Fox Business, the Today show, Speed TV, Edmunds.com and KTLA in Los Angeles. He currently covers the automotive industry and reviews new cars for the nationally syndicated Car Concerns radio show.

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