Jaguar drops XE’s diesel engine, among segment’s best

When the revamped 2020 Jaguar XE sport sedan rolls into showrooms this summer, it will be missing one of the most fuel-efficient engines available in a compact luxury sedan: the 2.0-liter turbodiesel EPA rated at 42 mpg on the highway.

Despite the XE’s lackluster 2018 sales, Jaguar has given the car a major freshening. But for the U.S., the diesel engine is gone. “The 2020 model year XE changes are designed to simplify complication, focusing on the derivatives with the highest take rate,” said Jaguar Land Rover spokesman Nathan Hoyt.

Jaguar has restyled the car with new front and rear bumpers, a new grille and revised headlights and taillights with stylized LED lighting cues, a treatment meant to evoke the F-Type sports car.

The XE’s interior, which has received lukewarm reviews, has also been revamped. It features soft-touch materials, standard leather seats and improved storage and comfort, JLR says.

Two 2.0-liter turbo gasoline engines will be available, the standard 247-hp version and the high-performance 296-hp engine that comes with the R-Dynamic package. XE prices start at $40,895, including shipping.

Last year in the U.S., Jaguar sold 4,704 XEs, down 49 percent from 2017. Through two months this year, sales climbed 15 percent from a year earlier to 1,183. Among nonhybrid compact luxury cars, the Jaguar XE diesel carried the highest fuel economy rating, according to the 2019 EPA Fuel Economy Guide.

Hoyt said, “We’re still committed to diesels in other models, and we’ll continue to offer them.”