Thus, materialism runs rampant in America, where the national motto might as well be, "Gotta get me some of that," despite record levels of personal bankruptcy. Denizens of the world's richest country are compelled to express success and superiority through possessions that convey wealth, from a residence in the right zip code and a luxury car in the garage to a cutting-edge home entertainment system in the home theater and clothing adorned with designer labels hanging in a walk-in closet large enough to double as a guest room.
Not surprisingly, then, no matter how good or how bad a vehicle the 2005 Jaguar X-Type is, Americans will buy it, if for no other reason than it is a Jaguar. Styling cues, inside and out, are lifted directly from the XJ8 flagship sedan making the X-Type look much more expensive than its mid-30s price tag. Yet, despite the power of the chrome "leaper" hood ornament, almost half of the people who buy an X-Type choose a different marque after the lease expires, according to Jaguar.
To stanch the exodus of potentially loyal Jaguar owners and to continue attracting new consumers to showrooms, Jaguar claims to have made more than 1,000 modifications to the X-Type that improve both quality and drivability. To find out, and to drive the latest variant, the 2005 Jaguar X-Type 3.0 Sportwagon, we traveled to the California desert for a day of driving, poking, and prodding.