Jaguar F-Pace review

Find out more about the Jaguar F-Pace in the latest Motors.co.uk Review

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4
Out of 5

Pros

  • - Stunning looks
  • - Agile to drive
  • - Great engine choice

Cons

  • - Top-spec models are expensive
  • - Disappointing interior quality in places
  • - Questions over reliability
  • MPG

    23 - 51

  • CO2

    140 - 272 g/km

Model review

Audi, BMW, Land Rover and Mercedes had long dominated the premium SUV sector, with strong sales between them. However, one manufacturer that was surprisingly late to join the party was Jaguar, which seems all the more odd when you consider that Jaguar and Land Rover are joint companies.

This was corrected in 2015 when it launched its F-Pace, which is one of the most important models in the firm’s long history. Described by Jaguar as an “SUV for those who love to drive”, the F-Pace managed to do just that with its emphasis on dynamics and handling, as well as its lightweight aluminium structure.

The F-Pace had been previewed by a CX-17 concept just a couple of years earlier, which it looks almost identical to, with the concept helping to solidify the idea that a Jaguar SUV was on its way. It also shares several parts with the firm’s F-Type sports car, too.

The F-Pace is a practical, luxurious and tech-laden model that was exactly the right car at the right time for the British manufacturer, and combined what posh SUV buyers were after.

Latest model

The F-Pace has been on sale since 2015, although Jaguar has already made a number of changes to its line-up in that time.

The first adjustment made to the range was the introduction of a 296bhp 2.0-litre petrol engine, which promises decent efficiency and excellent performance. A 237bhp 2.0-litre diesel was another addition to the engine offerings.

A number of other small adjustments were made for the 2018 model year F-Pace including revised seats, as well as a ‘Dual View’ touchscreen setup which can allow the driver and passenger to view different displays all on the same 10-inch touchscreen. Some new colour choices were also added, as well as the addition of a number of autonomous safety aids such as ‘Forward Vehicle Guidance’, which helps to place the car when parking, as well as a system that can help detect hazards when front vision is obstructed which can be used when turning out of blind junctions, for example.

The latest change to the F-Pace model run has been the introduction of an F-Pace SVR – a 542bhp 5.0-litre V8-powered model, which offers supercar thrills and a 0-60mph time of 4.1 seconds. A number of performance enhancements have been made to the model, such as a tuned chassis, an SVR aerodynamic package and a variable active exhaust to name but a few features on the model.

Value for money

The F-Pace is quite well-priced next to comparable models, with F-Pace models costing from £36,520, which is several thousand pounds cheaper than the BMW X3 and Audi Q5.

Standard equipment is largely good, too, with entry-level Prestige cars coming with a 10-inch touchscreen with satellite navigation, as well as grained leather upholstery, front and rear parking sensors and an electric tailgate. An impressive amount of safety kit is also included too such as autonomous emergency braking, lane-keep assist and a driver attention alert.

It’s only top spec models that begin to get costly, with S models starting from £54,440 and SVR versions from £74,835.

Used values have also held up well, too, thanks to initial strong demand for the F-Pace. At the time of writing, the cheapest cars for sale started from £26,000, which pays for a 2016 model with around 50,000 miles on the clock.

There are small discounts offered on nearly-new models—particularly on the less desirable Prestige models.

Looks and image

The F-Type is a striking-looking model, particularly with its design hints inspired by Jaguar’s F-Type sports car. Slim headlights, a long bonnet and an imposing front grille give the F-Pace a distinctive and imposing look on the roads, and it’s undoubtedly one of the most stylish SUVs on the market today. It’s probably not quite as design-orientated as the Range Rover Velar it shares it underpinnings with, but it’s hard to fault. R-Sport, S and SVR models also come with their own individual bodykits, with the latter being the most aggressively-styled version on sale.

The F-Pace’s cabin is a great place to be. As you would expect from a premium model, it feels deliciously upmarket with plenty of leather around the cabin. The leather feels more luxurious with the more money you spend on it. It’s also a classy cabin, helped by the 10-inch InControl touchscreen system which offers a host of functions. It misses out on the two-screen setup you’ll find on newer models from the Jaguar Land Rover brand, but it’s still a good system to use. Sadly, the quality doesn’t feel as premium as you might expect in places, with a few cheap-feeling materials creeping into the cabin, and it’s also not quite as sturdy as you imagine.

If you want your SUV to be fun to drive, there are not many better options out there than the F-Pace. Jaguar makes a big deal about the F-Pace being like an F-Type with more practicality, and you learn that there’s a surprising amount of truth in that behind the wheel. It features accurate, well-weighted steering and is surprisingly engaging to drive. There’s also an impressive lack of body-lean for a top-heavy SUV, while the F-Pace features plenty of good engines, too. We are yet to drive the V8-powered SVR model but expect it to be a hoot. Though this sporty focus can result in a rather firm ride, particularly on cars fitted with the larger alloy wheels.

Space and practicality

 

While the F-Pace undoubtedly majors on styling and its driving experience, Jaguar hasn’t forgotten about the need for its SUV to be practical.

It’s an easy car to access for families, thanks to its higher ride height and wide-opening doors, and there will be few complaints from passengers once they’re inside. There’s generous amounts of legroom and headroom in the rear for all but the tallest adults, although the panoramic roof can eat into headroom.

Boot space is seriously impressive, offering far more luggage room than what you find in the Audi Q5 and BMW X3, with 650 litres to play with all five seats in place, or 1,740 litres if you fold the rear seats down. It’s also well-shaped, while the flat floor makes it easy to load and unload heavier objects.

The F-Pace was awarded a five-star safety rating by the experts at Euro NCAP when it was tested in 2017. It scored highly across all categories, with a good number of advanced safety aids being included as standard. These include automatic emergency braking, traffic sign recognition, lane-keep assist and a driver attention alert.

Engines

A generous range of petrol and diesel engines are offered on the F-Pace.

Four diesels are available. The entry-level engine is a 2.0-litre diesel engine, which is available with either 161bhp or 178bhp. Both offer decent performance, although the 161bhp engine can feel underpowered at faster speeds and doesn’t particularly suit the F-Pace’s character. The next engine is a twin-turbocharged 237bhp engine, which can accelerate from 0-60mph in 6.8 seconds and onto a top speed of 135mph. The range-topping diesel engine is a 3.0-litre V6 unit which produces 296bhp. It’s a fantastic engine, although isn’t much quicker than the cheaper the 237bhp unit, with its 0-60mph time of 6.2 seconds and top speed of 150mph.

The petrol choice isn’t quite as extensive, with all the petrol options being quite powerful engines. The first unit is a turbocharged 2.0-litre engine which is available with either 247bhp or 296bhp, which have 0-60mph times of 6.6 and 5.8 seconds respectively. Sitting at the top of the engine line-up is the meaty 5.0-litre V8 unit which develops 542bhp. It’s the same engine as you would find in the F-Type and is able to crack 0-60mph in 4.1 seconds and keep going to a top speed of 174mph.

The 161bhp engine is the only available with a manual transmission – the rest of the range comes as standard with automatic transmissions. It’s also worth noting that the two entry-level diesel engines are the only ones offered with rear-wheel-drive, as all other models come as standard with all-wheel-drive.

Running costs

There’s quite a big split between fuel types and their running costs. The diesel engines are unsurprisingly the most efficient, with claimed fuel economy figures ranging from 43.5mph to 50.4mpg — the 161bhp 2.0-litre diesel being the best engine on fuel. CO2 figures vary between 147g/km and 172g/km on these.

The petrol engines are all quite thirsty, returning fuel economy figures in the low 30s, and CO2 figures between 185g/km and 189g/km. The SVR is its own breed for running costs and will be a particularly costly model to run with its poor economy and high CO2 emissions.

Another factor to be aware of with the F-Pace is Vehicle Excise Duty, as all versions with a list price of over £40,000 will have to pay £450 per year to tax for two to six years after first registration, with models less than that only having to pay £140 in annual VED.

Insurance premiums could be quite high, with insurance groups ranging between 23 for the basic diesel engine to 42 for the V6 diesel engine. The SVR hasn’t been given a grouping yet, but it’s highly likely it will sit in the highest insurance group of 50.

Things to look out for

Neither Jaguar nor Land Rover has had the best reliability reputation in the past, and while the firm has certainly improved in this respect, there’s still been a disappointing number of complaints from owners. Sadly, several F-Pace owners have reported issues with their cars’ electrics, and more worryingly, the engines. It’s only affected a handful of cars, but it’s disappointing that such premium models are plagued by these faults.

Rivals

The premium crossover/SUV sector is quite a congested sector, and the F-Pace is no different. From the big German trio, the F-Pace has to rival the Audi Q5, BMW X3 and X4 and also the Mercedes GLC. Other competitors include the Alfa Romeo Stelvio, Lexus NX, Land Rover Discovery Sport, Range Rover Velar and the Porsche Macan.

 

Depreciation

Strong demand since new for the F-Pace has kept used values high for Jaguar’s first SUV. There are discounts available, but on the whole, the car has held its value very well, and it’s a model you can buy with a degree of confidence knowing it’s not going to depreciate too significantly.

Which F-Pace to Pick

Cheapest to Buy When New

2.0d [163] Prestige 5dr

Most MPG

2.0d [163] Prestige 5dr

Fastest Model (0-60)

5.0 Supercharged V8 SVR 5dr Auto AWD

Summary

  1. Stunning looks
  2. Fantastic to drive
  3. Firm ride on cars with large alloy wheels
  4. Impressive cabin space
  5. Excellent safety kit as standard
  6. Broad engine choice
  7. Available as a V8-powered ‘supercar-beating’ SVR version
  8. Doubts over reliability
  9. Holds its value well
  10. Jaguar’s first SUV is already one of the best on sale

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