The F-PACE was Jaguar’s first SUV when it appeared in 2016. It combines great looks and a smart interior with good driving manners. In fact, it’s one of the few SUVs to actually feel genuinely sporty to drive. It seats four in comfort and is well suited to families and couples. Let’s take a closer look at whether this is your next used car.
One of the best things about the Jaguar F-PACE is how it looks. Narrow, curved headlights, a large black grille with a pair of huge air intakes beneath, plus a curvaceous bonnet and a tapered roofline get the sporting message across. It’s truly a thing of beauty.
Every version gets large alloy wheels, while other features depend on whether it’s a sport-oriented trim (body kit and satin black details and gloss black roof rails for R-Sport and S), or majors on luxury (chrome exterior details and chrome roof rails for Prestige and Portfolio). The high-powered F-PACE SVR appeared in 2018 with even sportier styling and up to 22-inch alloy wheels.
Most F-PACEs for sale from cinch have xenon headlights, while others get a panoramic glass roof, electrically folding door mirrors, keyless entry, larger brake calipers and more, depending on trim.
One of the best things about the Jaguar F-PACE is how it looks.
What’s it like to drive?
The F-PACE is based on Jaguar ‘s XE and XF saloons, which means it’s good to drive, even though it has a high-riding body. The SUV comes into its own on curvy country roads, where it handles well, staying composed on the bends, and the steering is sharp and offers plenty of feedback.
It also grips well, and the larger petrol and diesel engines have more than enough power, with the flagship SVR model covering 0-62mph in just four seconds. Some models can send power to all four wheels, which improves traction in poor weather, and also provides the F-PACE with genuine off-road ability.
The F-PACE is based on Jaguar ‘s XE and XF saloons, which means it’s good to drive
Just as the F-PACE uses much of the XE and XF saloons’ underpinnings, it also gains a lot from their dashboards. You’re spoiled with soft-touch plastics in the areas that matter, plus smatterings of chrome and leather, depending on trim level. The Audi Q5 and Porsche Macan have higher-quality interiors, but the F-PACE’s is still an attractive thing to look at.
An eight-inch touchscreen sits in the middle of the dashboard, with the ventilation controls beneath. Most rivals’ screens are more responsive. The Jag’s system comes with sat-nav, Bluetooth, a digital radio and a Wi-Fi hotspot – you’ll always be connected no matter how off-grid you go. Some have an upgraded, 10-inch screen with a crystal clear Meridian sound system, 10GB of storage, plus digital instruments in front of the driver. A facelift in 2021 brought extensive revisions to the dashboard, including a larger touchscreen with a new operating system.
The best bit about the F-PACE’s interior is the amount of space on offer – it’s easy to find a good driving position and both front occupants have room to stretch out. It’s the same story in the rear seats, where a couple of adults will be happy; there’s room for 3 back there, although they may be rubbing shoulders.
Storage space in the F-PACE is as impressive as passenger room - you get a cubby between the front-seat passengers, along with a pair of cup holders, deep bins in all doors, a good glovebox and somewhere to put your smartphone. You’ll also find USB and 12V sockets, as well as an HDMI connection on some models. No flat phone batteries on your long trips out.
The F-PACE’s boot is so cavernous you almost expect it to echo. There’s room for several suitcases or a fully catered picnic with chairs and even a folding table. The rear seat backs are split 40/20/40 and fold to allow the extended space to take items up to 1.8m long. You’ll find a powered tailgate on most models, which makes loading easier when you’ve got your hands full of shopping.
Running costs and reliability
The lowest-powered 2.0-litre diesel engine averages 47.9mpg, according to the WLTP fuel economy tests. The best petrol engine for economy is the refined 2.0-litre unit, at 30.4mpg officially, and the supercharged 5.0-litre V8 behemoth in the SVR is listed at 23.1mpg – expect economy in the teens in the real world.
F-PACEs fitted with four-wheel drive drink more than their 2WD siblings. The difference isn’t as great as you’d think because it’s only 4WD on demand.
What we love
We love the way the F-PACE looks and drives, with more than enough performance from the larger engines to match the styling – and the V8-powered SVR is just phenomenal. We’re also impressed with the amount of space on offer for occupants – and all of them will love the fact the boot will swallow their luggage with ease. That makes the F-PACE perfect for couples, families and, yes, even antique shop owners.
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There’s much to like about the F-PACE, from its terrific styling to a decent level of standard equipment, large boot and comfortable seats. It’s the way it handles that impresses most, though. The F-PACE might have been Jaguar’s first-ever SUV but it really hits the bullseye.
This review was