That Jaguar can build sporty and elegant vehicles, they have already proven several times. With proven technology and stylish design, the British want to stir up the SUV segment with the F-Pace. We tested the performance crossover.
Visually, the F-Pace immediately sees its relationship to Jaguar. The dominant grill and the muscular bonnet have been taken over by the XF engineers. The large air intakes underneath the bumper and the headlights, which look higher towards the outside, also show the design language of the XF. The taillights, however, clearly recall the F-Type. The shape is overall very sporty and fluently chosen. The designers have also integrated the third side window into the roofline. If you think away the diffuser, the F-Type could even be a spacious coupe.
With a length of 4.73 meters and a width of 2.13 meters, it offers enough space on the back seat for up to three adults. The passengers on the right and left are farther outside than usual. And the wheelbase of 2,874 millimeters offers enough leg room for all three rear passengers. Thus, the SUV is not only more spacious, but even larger than its competitors Audi Q5, BMW X3 and Porsche Macan. Also, the boot volume is more opulent in upright seats with 650 liters than in the competitors. With the rear seat folded down, it expands to 1,740 liters – the seats can be easily folded from the trunk. Practical are the adjustable rails with which cargo can be attached.
Economical on the way
Despite its size, the F-Pace weighs just 1,665 kilograms. The motorisation of our test car with 177 kW / 240 hp and 500 Nm of torque is also sufficient. The 25d AWD accelerates in 7.2 seconds from 0 to 100. Despite an average speed of 170 km / h, the F-Pace has consumed just 6.8 liters per 100 kilometers. Although this is one liter more than the specified consumption of 5.8 liters, but still a very good value for a vehicle of this size. The top speed of 217 km / h we did not reach, but were close at 211 km / h. Despite the high speed it is very quiet in the interior. A conversation with the rear passengers is possible with normal volume.
The eight-speed automatic transmission changes gears smoothly – and with the adaptive damper adjustment from the Jaguar XF and the four-wheel drive with torque-on-demand function, keeps the SUV perfectly in the track even in the rain. The damper adjustment is supported by an electromechanical power steering, which, for example, makes maneuvering the vehicle even more comfortable. For sporty oriented drivers the individually adjustable driver program “Configurable Dynamics” is ready. It was first developed for the F-Type: The driver can choose which dynamics-relevant parameters and algorithms he wants to change in order to drive sporty or efficient. With the so-called Intelligent Driveline Dynamics system, the F-Pace drives under normal conditions like a rear-wheel drive. When needed, the system automatically delivers power to the front wheels via a transfer case with oil-cooled multi-plate clutch. To ensure that the crossover performs well even outside paved roads, the driver can choose from several programs for different operating conditions. And indeed, the F-Pace is not only an SUV for the city, but also off the road well. Potholes and bumps he gently cushions and consistently keeps the track.
The high-quality interior is obligatory in this segment: the perforated leather in Cognac harmonises very well with the dark high-gloss blue of the vehicle. The fitting in black leather also complements the dark wood veneer of the center console and the doors. Overall, the cockpit of the Performance Crossover is cleaned up. The number of buttons on the dashboard and the center console are kept to a minimum. The steering wheel is also equipped with only the most necessary functions. Rather unconventionally arranged are the windows: These are not found on the door handle, but on the window frame, which makes the operation a bit awkward.
As usual in this class, the F-Pace is equipped with an extensive connectivity and infotainment offer. There are two infotainment systems to choose from: “InControl Touch” with an eight-inch touchscreen and “InControl Touch Pro” with a 10.2-inch touchscreen. At first glance, the 10.2-inch display with the large colorful tiles looks clear and structured. But: The deeper you get into the menu, the more confusing it gets. Although the navigation system is capable of learning and memorizes, for example, the daily commute to work, but to enter a destination and to bring the Navi to start, you need a lot of patience and good nerves.
Traffic sign recognition faulty
The heart of the security is the stereo camera. It forms the “eye” for the lane departure warning system, the lane departure warning system, the adaptive speed limiter and the attention assistant. Most systems work reliably for the most part and without any major delays. The warning tones are pleasant to the ear and not overly intrusive. However, on construction sites or with temporary speed limits the traffic sign assistant did not always work perfectly: For example, in a construction site with a speed limit of 80 km / h, we were able to drive 120 km / h according to the system. Badly scannable traffic signs have overlooked the system every now and then. Practical is the head-up display, which projects central information such as speed into the driver’s field of vision. When wearing polarized sunglasses, this information is missing on the windshield. But that is a fundamental problem of all head-up displays.
But the “Activity Key” works even better. It is a waterproof and shockproof fitness bracelet with integrated transponder, which works without a battery. When opening and closing the doors, the driver only has to hold the strap to the “J” in the Jaguar logo on the tailgate. The keys lying in the interior are thus automatically activated or deactivated. Of course, this and other extras drive up the base price of 66,000 euros. Our test car with a panoramic glass roof and an armada of systems and assistants cost about 85,000 euros. For the first SUV in the history of the company, Jaguar has built a competitive vehicle with the F-Pace that can easily compete with the Porsche Macan, the Audi Q5 or the BMW X5.