Jaguar F-Pace – as mean looking as an Audi Q7?

I’m starting to wish I’d borrowed the 3.0-litre V6 F-Pace. Apart from the yawn-inspiring diesel engine in this week’s test car the first Jaguar SUV is otherwise rather good.

A shame really as this 2.0 diesel is the one most buyers will opt for, to benefit from tax breaks and the fine fuel economy. If only it churned out a bit more grunt and sounded like a ‘proper’ sporty SUV.

At least there’s no doubt the F-Pace turns heads, it’s rather like a mini Maserati Levante, thanks to that gaping from grille and compact, curvy shape. I love it – although I don’t think our dark blue test car really shows the F-Pace off to the max.

Perhaps only the Audi Q7 has a more aggressive look. As Clarkson once said, you could ‘nail it to a church door to fend off the devil’. The Jaguar looks like it means business, which is good enough for me. Amen.

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Jaguar F-Pace – another car that squeals when you push it hard

We are moving towards a world where cars have smaller, more frugal and efficient engines that help to save the polar bears.

This is a good thing – except for one fact. Small engines have to be revved harder to perform and consequently sound like they are being wrung by the neck.

That’s right, just like last week’s 2.0-litre diesel Volvo, the F-Pace 2.0 diesel is not a relaxing cabin for point and shoot drivers who prefer an A-road to a motorway.

It’s quite depressing. I can’t say bad things about either car but having to thrash a 2.0 derv to enjoy yourself is not what I expected from two otherwise thoroughly modern machines.

Hmmm…

Jaguar F-Pace – blurring the line between SUV and sports car?

 

Jaguar’s first SUV is infused with more than a dash of Land Rover DNA. You’d expect that with two such bedfellows.

Yet the F-Pace isn’t really designed to crash through the jungle or pull a heavy load. It’s really a bit of a softie – with part-time four-wheel drive and very pretty styling.

The line between SUV and proper 4×4 has been blurred for a long time. The F-Pace errs on the side of the former. It’s not a sporty beast like the Porsche Macan either – whatever the advertising tries to tell you.

Sure the supercharged V6 version is tasty but really the F-Pace will be mostly consumed as a 2.0-litre diesel, like our test car this week.

Let’s see how it goes…

Almost a five star car – the Jaguar F-Type is a fabulous driving machine

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After trying my very hardest to find fault with the F-Type Coupe, I have to say it’s come out of the fray rather well. The niggles have been mostly down to my individual test car – and that ridiculous spare wheel swallowing up the boot!

The hard top version of the more popular roadster is, without doubt, the prettier car. And because the chassis is stronger than the convertible, it feels better balanced.

Yes, it’s not as entertaining as a Porsche 911 but it is a lot cheaper – and you will turn a lot more heads. It certainly has more soul and character than the German coupe.

Perhaps the  only disappointing aspect is the interior. It just that luxury feel, even with lashings of leather about the place. There is leather, and there is leather.

This is almost a five star car, held back by the average fuel economy and that uninspiring interior…

The Jaguar F-Type has a massive sweet spot – if you can find an empty road

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Today was the first inspiring drive I’ve enjoyed in the F-Type. I took the coupe across the Cotswolds and down to the McLaren headquarters in Woking.

True, the 3.0-litre V6 was a little dwarfed by supercar exotica in the car park – plus a few helicopters – but it was a route uncluttered by traffic. The Jaguar shone, turning in a handling masterclass.

It’s not the quickest two-seater of course. 0-60mph in 5.3 seconds is barely enough to set the pulses racing. But in Dynamic mode, the F-Type has a massive sweet spot.

However, I do seem to have put more fuel in this car that any others over the last few months. A 29mpg (combined) figure seems a bit average compared to some of the competition.

Money well spent…

The incredible flatulent Jaguar F-Type Coupe…. (minus sound effects)

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Having stripped the spare wheel out of the boot to make space for an overnight bag, I didn’t expect the F-Type to have a hissy-fit and start playing up.

I’m not sure a motoring journalist has penned a piece about a flatulent safety belt before so this could be a first. However, the Jaguar seems to have developed an odd, erm, farting noise when stretched out of its holder.

At first I thought it might have been my sweaty armpit. You know the form – cup your hand under your arm and squeeze. The perfect schoolboy wheeze.

But no. The source of the unfortunate sound is the belt mechanism itself. A cool car with a build in fart sounder. Not quite sure Jaguar had that in might with the F-Type but have any owners out there experienced the same problem?

The world’s smallest car boot? Surprisingly, it’s a Jaguar

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Anybody remember the Mk II Toyota MR2? Apart from having a name that meant ‘shit’ in French, it also came equipped with the smallest luggage space known to man.

I thought those days were long gone – until I opened the tailgate of the F-Type coupe this morning. Wow! That has to be the tiniest boot ever. Smaller than the Toyota in fact.

And the reason is the space-saver spare wheel. It costs an extra £265 but takes up all of the load area. What the cock was Jaguar thinking when they designed that then?

So, I’ve just had to unbolt the spare wheel to fit an overnight bag in a coupe. Remember, there are no rear seats in the F-Type – only the passenger seats offers usable space.

This is quite mad. I know it is possible to specify a tyre inflator kit but are car designed to this level of detail should not be quite so compromised….