- Good performance and handling
- Very nice interior
- Low running costs
- High purchase price
- Average all-electric range
- Batteries reduce boot space
The F-Pace is the largest of three SUVs offered by Jaguar, alongside the smaller E-Pace and the all-electric I-Pace.
But, for those who want an in-between taster of an all-electric future, both the fossil-fuelled SUVs have gained a plug-in hybrid version following a reasonably recent facelift.
There are plenty of mild hybrid petrols and diesels to choose from. But apart from the top-of-the-range, mind-blowingly expensive P550 SVR version, the plug-in hybrid is the most potent model.
It’s called the P400e because it offers just over 400PS (404 to be precise) – the ‘e’ referring to its electric credentials.
A 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine blends with an electric motor, featuring all-wheel drive and an eight-speed automatic.
There are two main ‘categories’ of trims in the F-Pace range: R-Dynamic and Sport. Most are the former, and the P400e is only available in R-Dynamic.
The R-Dynamic trims have four variants: S, SE, HSE and Black.
Entry-level S gets you 19-inch alloys, an 11.4-inch Pivi Pro infotainment touchscreen, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, DAB radio, voice control and a wireless phone charger. You also get a powered tailgate, power-folding door mirrors, dual-zone climate control, rain-sensing wipers, automatic LED headlights and taillights, 12-way heated electric front seats, Ebony perforated DuoLeather sport seats, and R-Dynamic styling throughout.
SE adds memory function to the driver’s seat and door mirrors, keyless entry, metal pedals, automatic high beam and a Meridian sound system.
Black trim sits on its own, offering a blend of S and SE trims, but with black styling on the de-chromed grille and window surrounds, although it’s more expensive than SE trim.
Top-of-the-range HSE gets animated directional indicators, a Driver Assist Pack, illuminated treadplates, premium cabin lighting and 16-way electrically-adjustable memory front seats, which are heated, ventilated and offer massage function.
The exterior wears its looks well, combining the large radiator grille with squinting headlights. In contrast, two large air intakes on either side of the lower grille provide definition and shape to the front.
Around the sides, fenders sit behind the front wheels, with meaty side skirts hinting at the car's off-roading capabilities and windows tapering upwards towards the rear.
The rear window is sharply angled, with a defining crease, thin taillights at either side and a slightly protruding bumper, which sits above a silver piece of bodywork.
Inside, the upholstery looks the part, while the cabin design has been overhauled and vastly improved, giving a premium, luxurious feel.
The inviting-to-hold steering wheel and the area around the gear selector are bathed in silver trim.
The infotainment screen sits like a tablet glued onto the dashboard, sitting above physical climate control dials, which display the selected temperature on digital screens inside the dial’s circular surround.
The PiviPro system is excellent and a significant improvement on Jaguar's previous effort. It has a responsive display, intuitive menus and customisable screens. In fact, it's one of the best systems out there, even if BMW still leads the way.
Overall, the interior is a big step up from the pre-facelifted version and comfortably challenges Jaguar’s German rivals.
On The Road
Handling & Performance
0-62mph is done in 5.2-seconds, so for a 2.1-tonne SUV, it's mightily quick.
The electric motor helps deliver a burst or torque to the wheels, and accounting for its size; it's a beast from a standing start.
In all-electric mode, there's still about 145PS at your disposal, which is fine for driving around town or in rush-hour traffic, although Jaguar says you can get 87mph without the engine.
Nevertheless, the motor working in harmony with the refined engine is impressive and makes overtaking on motorways a doddle.
As you’d expect, there is a bit of body roll in the corners, but all SUVs suffer from a degree of wobbliness because of a higher centre of gravity.
The drawbacks are limited, and, especially in Dynamic mode, the handling is impressive, with hearty levels of agility and entertainment, helped by the excellently weighted steering.
Of course, it’s no sports car, but it’s one of the best handling SUVs you can buy – or lease.
The downside is the ride comfort, and though it's not uncomfortable by any means, it can’t match the ride quality of the Audi Q5.
JLR wanted to make the F-Pace a driver’s car so, in comparison with rivals, the F-Pace is keener in the bends, but sacrifices some of the suspension’s absorption as a result.
The PHEV is most affected due to its increased weight. But the impact of this has been mitigated by Jaguar’s choice of smaller 19-inch alloys.
We don’t recommend anything bigger.
Space & Practicality
You won’t struggle for space in an F-Pace, with plenty of leg and headroom up front.
Nor will you fight to find a comfortable driving position, thanks to the electric adjustment in the driver's seat.
You sit pretty high up, too, and front visibility is reasonably good. However, the rear is limited thanks to the thick pillars, offset somewhat by the inclusion of a rear-view camera.
The seats are comfortable, and rear-seat passengers are well accommodated, while the slope in the roofline is too slight to limit headroom.
While you can fit three adults in the back, it’s not something you’d want to do regularly, especially as the middle rear seat is too firm to cope with on longer journeys.
There is a lot of storage space inside, too, with reasonably sized door bins and an accommodating central cubby.
The F-Pace has always had a generously capacious boot. The P400e's measures 619 litres – although this is 174 litres less than the non-PHEV models due to the batteries being stored underneath the boot floor.
This expands to 1,662 litres with the rear seats folded down in a 40/20/40 split.
Fuel consumption is 128.4mpg in the HSE, along with CO2 emissions of 49g/km, although you’ll need to keep it charged to get anywhere near that.
The claimed figures reduce company car tax, but all-electric cars will save even more money in that regard.
You might think the first year's road tax is free, but because the list price is over £40,000, there's an additional £355 a year to pay for the first five years.
The F-Pace offers rapid charging for its 17.1kWh battery, so a 0-80% top-up can take as little as half an hour, though even a full 0-100% charge only takes about two hours on a home 7kW wall box.
Thirty-three miles of all-electric driving is claimed, although expect around 25 miles in practice.
The warranty has unlimited mileage but only lasts three years, however Jaguar will extend it if you're happy to pay extra.
The Jaguar F-Pace is a tempting vehicle.
JLR’s claim of being on a par with Audi, BMW and Merc is often questioned, but there’s no doubt the F-Pace is comparable with its German equivalents.
It is great to drive, economical, and, despite the smaller boot, still practical.
Entry-level ‘S’ trim is well-equipped, so, due to the high price, there’s little point going for anything else, although running costs will be low, saving you money long-term.
However, the PHEV is so much more expensive than the bottom of the range that it’s slightly more expensive than the entry-level all-electric Jaguar I-Pace.
If the purchase price isn't a factor and low running costs are the main appeal, its electric sibling is probably the best argument against going for the F-Pace.