Jaguar F-PACE

Portfolio 2.0D AWD

Jaguar F-Pace, front
Jaguar F-Pace, front
Jaguar F-Pace, front
Jaguar F-Pace, front
Jaguar F-Pace, front
Jaguar F-Pace, rear
Jaguar F-Pace, side
Jaguar F-Pace, side
Jaguar F-Pace, front
Jaguar F-Pace, rear
Jaguar F-Pace, rear
Jaguar F-Pace, interior
Jaguar F-Pace, interior

YOU just know the explosion of popularity in the SUV scene is showing little sign of letting up when a company renowned for producing beautifully styled sports cars announces it is entering the arena.

And that's just what Jaguar did back in 2016 when it launched the exquisite F-PACE.

But any concerns that the Jaguar badging would look out of place on an upright and somewhat practical vehicle were soon laid to rest as the F-PACE still possesses all the driving dynamism associated with the name and it's a car that will stop on-lookers dead in their tracks.

The five-door model has the likes of the BMW X3, Audi Q5 and even the Porsche Macan in its sights and it certainly looks impressive from any angle with a sporty, muscular design that features chrome roof rails, xenon headlights with LED Blade daytime running lights, twin tailpipes, LED tail lights, a sliding panoramic sunroof, privacy glass, satin chrome radiator surrounds and side power vents, along with chunky 20-inch alloys to complete the look.

As you would expect, the interior is extremely upmarket in its layout especially in high-end Prestige trim which features the likes of a Navigation Pro system with Meridian surround sound music system, ambient lighting, Bluetooth connectivity, a head-up display and a 10-inch dual view touchscreen.

The seats feature Ebony Windsor leather and boast 10-way power adjustment with memory functions and they can be heated with three settings to fend off the winter chill.

Our car, powered by a 2-0-litre turbocharged diesel engine delivering 240ps, carried a price-tag of £47,115 although a number of optional extras and packs bumped the final cost up to £63,274.

It could sprint to 62mph from a standing start in 7.2 seconds, maxing out at 135mph and, according to official figures, it could deliver combined fuel economy of 48.7mpg with carbon emissions of 153g/km.

The F-PACE is a similar size as its sibling over in the Land Rover stable - the Discovery Sport - and, our test car with AWD featured plenty of clever off-roading capabilities.

So, the F-PACE looks the business and is dressed to the nines with kit, but how does it perform when put to the test? The answer is exceptionally well.

Despite boasting practical SUV dimensions, you soon forget this is anything other than another high-performance Jaguar.

Unlike many high sided vehicles, it can be pushed hard into corners with confidence - there is minimal body movement and the road holding is super grippy.

It feels beautifully poised over uneven surfaces with the efficient suspension system calming the unexpected bumps and dips along the way. And that was on larger 20-inch wheels that were a £1,255 optional extra.

The acceleration through the eight-speed automatic gearbox is perfectly timed (there are steering wheel mounted paddles for extra control) and there is a constant stream of power on tap to make light work of overtaking slower vehicles.

The F-PACE is perfectly happy clocking up the motorway miles or being unleashed on twisting country lanes. It's also agile when manoeuvring through the crowds in congested town centres where the Advance Parking Assist Pack with surround camera (an £1,930 option) will make you look an expert when squeezing into a tiny parking space.

Being an SUV means the F-PACE needs to be practical and it ticks all the right boxes on that count. In the back, there is ample room for a trio of adults to stretch out and storage options also impress with a boot capacity ranging from 650 to 1,740 litres with the 40:20:40 split folding rear seats dropped flat.

The F-PACE is packed with safety features and scored a maximum five stars when it was tested for its Euro NCAP rating. Systems include autonomous emergency braking, dynamic stability control and traction control, emergency brake assist, lane departure warning, trailer stability assist, hill launch assist, blind spot monitoring and reverse traffic detection, numerous airbags, plus lots more besides.

FAST FACTS

Jaguar F-PACE Portfolio 2.0D AWD

Price:£47,115

Mechanical: 240ps, 1,999cc, 4cyl diesel engine driving four wheels via 8-speed automatic gearbox

Max Speed: 135mph

0-62mph: 7.2 seconds

Combined MPG: 48.7

Insurance Group: 34

C02 emissions: 153g/km

Bik rating: 37%

Warranty: 3yrs/unlimited miles

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