My FOI about the Mayoral car has been answered, and with fairly good answers. Here’s the response.
Going through the answers, the model is confirmed as an XJ LWB, in Portfolio trim, which puts it in the middle of the LWB range, just below the Supersport, which would be a bit racy for the mayor, and even more expensive to run and own. As expected, it’s the 275BHP turbodiesel, not the petrol, which at least is the sane engine choice, giving similar performance and better economy and emissions (though of course, there’s better choices for economy):
Screenshot from Jaguar’s website showing performance and economy/emissions for the XJ series. Click to enlarge.
If you want to look yourself, see Jaguar’s website.
I’m unsure what is meant by
Purchased initially then an options
appraisal is carried out to see which option is cheaper i.e. leasing or
Prudential borrowing. (The options appraisal is being done now).
If any reader can explain that, please do so. Strikes me as an odd thing to do: purchase then investigate the costs [shrug], but at least they paid below list, that being £59288.33 excluding VAT but including OTR costs, according to Jaguar’s site.
The fact that no comparison was made to any other car intrigues me: The new Jag was considered
Like for like replacement on technical specification.
For the old car. At this point I realise I should have asked for an exact model for that (and if anyone fancies getting me a picture of it now it is the deputy Mayor’s car, I’ll follow that up), but on the face of it, it would seem the selection critera were “Buy a Jag, because that’s what we did last time. Make it big and luxurious, and bollocks to the cost”. History of the XJ range can be found here.
It’s interesting that the old DH1 did 6k miles last year, and for the new car’s expected life and depreciation term according to the response, it should cover 42K miles during it’s life. In that time, Walsall council tax payers will be paying £7273.95 per year in depreciation on the balance sheet, though of course, in reality, depreciation is heavier in the first few years, levelling out later on, and even after 7 years, this car will hold some value.
I find it especially damning that no thought was given to the costs of hiring an appropriate car as required: average mileage for a private car is around 15k miles pa, and this very expensive car is covering less than half that: it will be spending a lot of time quietly depreciating in a compound, or on the shiny new car park.
Consumable costs at under £1000/year seem reasonable, and their estimates of fuel costs seem, if anything, slightly pessimistic, depending on if you believe the manufacturers fuel economy figures. The Jag is reckoned to do 36.7-50.4 mpg, diesel is currently £1.349/litre, about £6.13 a gallon. If we take the combined mpg figure, I reckon £821/year, £2463.29 over 3 years.
I’ll accept that the only other 4 or 5 door car on fleet (an 03 Focus estate) is probably not suitable.
So, a reasonable response, but for me it’s shameful that such an expensive car was purchased without exploring alternatives- be they a cheaper car (PDF) , or hire.
Interested readers may like to see what What Car Magazine thought of this car, and what it thinks of running costs (screenshot below). This will be based on owning the car from new for 3 years and doing 12000 miles per year:
What Car? Magazine’s estimated running costs for the Jag.