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By Jonathan Crouch
Added 13th July, 2018
Jaguar makes a full-electric vehicle - and a very good one. Jonathan Crouch looks at the I-PACE.
The F-TYPE Coupe took all that was great about the Convertible version and built on it. So you get a stiffer chassis, a more affordable asking price and more power in the top V8 R model. The result is a very special car indeed. Even if you can only stretch to a V6 version. After all, compared to a rival Porsche Cayman S, Jaguar brought us a machine that was arguably better looking, unarguably better equipped, more powerful and endowed with a greater sense of occasion, inside and out. While it won't match the Porsche's delicacy of response at the limit, the F-TYPE Coupe got its chief competitor's measure in enough areas that count to really give the German brand something to worry about.
We don't think it'll suit many who associate performance motoring from this brand with XJS or XK models. Buckle such people up behind the wheel and they're liable to be a little taken aback. No matter. Jaguar needed to find a younger, more demanding, hungrier audience for its sports cars. It needed to convince people that here and now in this market at this time in history, it could be great again. Mission accomplished.
Jaguar's F-TYPE Coupe gets a sleeker look and swaps its supercharged V6 for an even more potent V8. Jonathan Crouch reports.
There's no doubt that this MK4 XJ was an outstanding technical achievement. But then the same can be said of many of its rivals from this period. Where this Jaguar is different though, can be summed up in that one simple but very telling word 'character'. Rather than being merely a larger version of an existing model, this is a stand-alone design in its own right. As a result, it feels special in a way that German competitors struggle to match.
More importantly, this car's unique selling points aren't only restricted to the way that it looks. Even if you don't agree with Designer Ian Callum's vision of the future of luxury motoring, you'll have to admit that the cabin has a sense of style and opulence that sets it apart from rivals, even if it can't quite match them for space. That interior benefitted most from the range of updates made to the revised model we've been looking at here. In overall terms, the improvements didn't significantly changed the appeal of this car, but they removed some of the reasons why previously, potential buyers might have dismissed it. Only a few issues remained, things like the lack of a few key electronic safety options and a slight restriction on boot space.
In summary, we think this car was a fitting flagship for a Jaguar brand that at last by 2015 had fully found itself as a maker of fast, beautiful cars. Bold and ferociously modern, this remains a Luxury saloon you can bond with, a limousine for life.
The F-PACE has been well received - and with good reason. Look at it, drive it and analyse it and you feel you've a product born out of generations of development. It's hard to believe this was Jaguar's first stab at the SUV segment.
All of which leaves this Jaguar as a very tough act to fault as a used car if you find a good one. It's one of the stand-out contenders in this corner of the SUV market, no small achievement when you look at the quality of the competition. True, it might not be as rough road-ready as a Land Rover product. Or as track-tailored as a Porsche Macan. Most buyers in this segment though, don't want a mid-sized luxury SUV at either of those two extremes. They want a car like this. A sporting SUV to savour.
Jaguar has thoroughly updated its F-PACE mid-sized sporting SUV. Jonathan Crouch takes a look.
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