- Powerful design with noise and performance to match
- Beautifully-styled interior and generously equipped
- Easy to drive and deceptively comfy
- Would like the option of a manual gearbox
- Lots more reasonably priced rivals these days
- You feel a little vunerable driving alongside huge lorries on motorways
The Jaguar F-type is a stunning two-seater sports car that’s available in coupe hard top or cabriolet soft top guise. Each style is available with three power outputs called P300, P450 and P575 which relates to the maximum PS on offer. All cars have an automatic gearbox and there is also the option of all-wheel drive.
Jaguar launched the stunning F-Type back in 2013 to great acclaim when it became the spiritual replacement for the legendary E-Type. There have been updates and facelifts since then, but the latest version really ups the ante with fully loaded trims to choose from too.
On The Road
We tested the Jaguar F-Type R-Dynamic powered by a 5.0-litre V8 450PS Supercharged petrol engine with all-wheel drive.
With 580Nm of torque, this F-Type can complete the 0-62mph sprint in just 4.6 seconds and tops out at 177mph.
It features an eight-speed Quickshift transmission with full driver control via steering wheel paddles or the SportShift gear selector for added fun and there are drive modes called Normal and Dynamic to alter the reactions of the car.
The acceleration out the starting blocks is instant and it’s a vehicle guaranteed to draw attention wherever it passes, not just because of the beautiful yet powerful styling, but also due to the noise. It’s loud and can be made louder thanks to an enhanced exhaust system.
It eats up motorway miles and reaches a comfortable cruising speed of 70mph in the blink of an eye. But it’s happiest showing off its true ability when fizzing through the quieter B roads.
The road holding is ultra-grippy meaning tight bends can be attacked with confidence and body roll is non-existent. It’s a sports car in its purest form and guaranteed to put a smile on anyone’s face who is lucky enough to be sitting behind the wheel.
The latest F-Type features an upgraded chassis set-up along with newly enhanced dampers and springs that help improve its agility and all-round performance. And while the ride is still slightly on the firm side, it is deceptively comfortable with supportive sports seats and an adaptive suspension system that helps smooth out the bumps and dips along the way.
This is a driving purist’s car with sharp handling, impressive agility and blistering pace and performance. It has an aggressive streak and, when called upon, can deliver racing starts that will leave you pinned to your seat.
But when things need calming down a little, the F-Type has a nice gentle side too and offers impressive agility in quieter town centre settings with good manoeuvrability.
The steering is beautifully weighted thanks to the electric power steering set-up being meticulously-tuned and, together with torque vectoring by braking assist, this latest F-Type is a dream to drive.
The car has a real-wheel drive bias most of the time, but should Mother Nature have a mood swing, the all-wheel drive system kicks in seamlessly to offer added grip with Rain/Ice/Snow settings.
The Jaguar F-Type is a two-door, two-seat performance sports car that will gain attention wherever it passes. It boasts beautiful streamlined curves, a fixed panoramic roof, flush door handles, a large black grille housing the Jaguar emblem, premium LED headlights with daytime running lights, privacy glass, quad outboard mounted exhaust pipes, LED tail lights, a stretched bonnet, deployable boot lid spoiler, plus 20-inch alloy wheels with black brake calipers.
Our test model featured an exterior black design pack costing £2,295 that added a black front splitter, gloss black grille surround, side vents and window surrounds, black ‘Jaguar’ script, along with black F-Type and engine badging.
The interior also has a black theme throughout with black Windsor leather performance seats, dark headliner and black carpet mats. The leather steering wheel has silver gear shift paddles and can be heated to fend off the winter blues. The seats can be heated or cooled and the test car featured an upgraded two-zone climate control that added £375 to the cost.
In The Car
Behind the Wheel
Finding the ideal driving position inside the F-Type is a simple process with six-way powered seats and a power-adjustable steering wheel. It is snug, but also comfortable on any long journey.
The main focal point is the 10-inch widescreen Touch Pro infotainment system with built-in sat-nav, full smartphone connectivity, DAB radio, a pitch perfect Meridian sound system, Bluetooth and clear driver display screen. This can be configurated to taste with a single dial if you need to concentrate on track or time-specific work, a traditional twin dial view or a full map display for navigation purposes.
All the controls are easy to operate on the move in this driver-focused cockpit and it’s nice to see some physical buttons to control the sound volume and climate control, rather than having to navigate a number of drop-down menus on a touchscreen. Sometimes simplicity really does take some beating.
Driver visibility is good, but not great as the rear screen is very narrow. However, there is a rearview camera that is essential when reversing.
Space & Practicality
The Jaguar F-Type is a two-seat sports car and therefore practicality options are somewhat limited which is only to be expected.
However, the Jaguar design team have managed to maximise the little room there is within the compact cabin and the boot can swallow a creditable 336 litres of kit with hidden storage beneath the boot floor.
There is a decent-sized glovebox, narrow door bins, twin cup holders and a deep central cubby box.
But one area that is very roomy is the space for the driver and passenger. A couple of six footers can easily fit into the F-Type, although I would challenge anyone to get in or out in a graceful or elegant manner!
Jaguar has a reputation as being a top premium carmaker and the F-Type is viewed as a flagship model, so expect the price to be heavy on the pocket.
Our test car started out costing £83,695, but a whole host of options saw the final price creep up to £95,345.
The day-to-day running costs are high too and according to WLTP-testing, the model could deliver a combined 26.2mpg with carbon emissions of 246g/km.
This CO2 figure would result in a first year road tax bill, or Vehicle Excise Duty charge to give it the official name, of £2,015 dropping to the standard £165 fee after 12 months.
But there is more bad news regarding costs because cars costing more than £40k incur an additional premium car levy of £355 for five years starting from the second year of ownership.
The test car sits in insurance group 48.
Quality & Reliability
Customers driving the first versions of the F-Type did express concerns regarding the electrics, but these issues have long since been rectified and the latest systems should prove problem-free.
There is a premium build quality to this car with an interior that is both elegant and upmarket with a combination of high-end upholstery and quality materials throughout. There is a chunky gear lever, solid doors, tough switchgear and the touchscreen is easily wiped clean from any fingerprints.
The car comes with Jaguar’s standard three-year, unlimited mileage warranty with an option to extend for an extra two years.
Safety & Security
Due to relatively low volume sales, the Jaguar F-Type has not been tested for a Euro NCAP safety rating. But it is packed with safety kit to protect occupants and other road users alike.
Features on the car include the likes of lane keep assist, a rear camera, front and rear parking aids, cruise control with speed limiter, traffic sign recognition, emergency brake assist, a driver condition monitor, anti-lock brakes, electronic brakeforce distribution, dynamic stability control and six airbags.
Park assist was an optional extra (£470) and that makes parking a lot simpler. Once a suitable space has been found, all the driver need do is select Drive or Reverse and control the speed and braking, while the car automatically steers the vehicle into its space. It will also help steer you out of the parking slot if necessary.
A blind sport assist pack costing £460 was an option on the test car and that added blind spot assist and a rear traffic monitor system.
To protect the F-Type, there is an alarm and immobiliser, remote central locking with deadlock and drive-away locking, along with the option of adding a secure tracker for £545.
With dynamic performance, outrageous pace and its beautiful styling, the Jaguar F-Type is a thrill seeker’s car that also brings a little bit of history to the mix.