Paul Maric road tests and reviews the 2014 Jaguar F-Type.
Rarely does a concept vehicle hold form when it finally moves into production.
Jaguar’s all new F-Type is the exception to that rule. The stunning new two-door convertible from Jaguar shifts the design of sports cars to a whole new level.
There literally isn’t an angle that doesn’t do the F-Type justice. Behind the wheel, you will catch yourself hunting for shop windows to steal another glance of the flawless design.
The same goes for everybody you pass on the street. People fall over themselves as you drive pass — respect is almost a given behind the wheel of the Jaguar F-Type.
Launched in Australia with three engine offerings (all supercharged for good measure), Jaguar offers the F-Type with a configuration to suit everybody’s needs.
At the entry level, the F-Type V6 is powered by a 3.0-litre supercharged V6 engine that produces a healthy 250kW and 450Nm of torque. That configuration is good for a 0-100km/h dash of just 5.3-seconds.
The F-Type V6 S winds the wick up further, producing an extra 30kW and 10Nm of torque. The result is a quicker 0-100km/h time of 4.9-seconds.
If you go all-in for the F-Type V8 S, the engine size jumps to a 5.0-litre supercharged V8. In addition to two extra exhaust pipes, the monstrous V8 produces 364kW and a staggering 625Nm of torque. The 0-100km/h time drops further to 4.3-seconds, making it one of the fastest two-door convertibles on the market.
Fuel economy across the range is reasonable, with the V6 consuming 9.0L/100km, the V6 S sipping 9.1L/100km and the V8 S churning through 11.1L/100km.
Priced from $138,645 for the F-Type V6, the V6 S costs an additional $32,400 at $171,045. The all out V8 S tips the scales at $201,945, lining up squarely with the Porsche 911 Carrera in terms of pricing.
Step inside the cabin and the authenticity of Jaguar’s latest effort begins to show true. Driver-centric controls and a focus on simplicity have opened up the Jaguar brand to a new group of buyers.
Flawless build quality and cool features, such as the rising air vents and an adjustable spoiler make the F-Type a unique and appealing alternative to the tried competition (a la Porsche, Mercedes-Benz, Audi and BMW).
If the design, interior and style aren’t quite enough to persuade you, just wait until you have a drive. Turn the F-Type over and an immediate crackle and idle thrum heighten the senses.
Slot the eight-speed automatic gearbox into gear and the fun begins. The inherent nature of a supercharged engine means that throttle response is razor sharp. For day-to-day driving, the eight-speed automatic works very well with the engine to move the F-Type with brilliant pace and elegance.
For added spice, slide the gear lever into Sport and prepare to hand your license over. In Sport mode the gearbox will hold gears for longer and forces sounds through the exhaust that are more race car than they are road car.
On the overrun the exhaust crackles and pops, add to that the engine note and you have yourself a bona fide sports car.
While steering feel isn’t quite as lively as a Porsche, the level of feedback and resistance through the wheel is very impressive. The same goes for ride and handling through bends. The chassis is incredibly strong and doesn’t flex as you push through corners ad infinitum.
Brake pedal feel is very good, inspiring confidence when the car is pushed. In manual mode, the drive can manually shift gears using the steering wheel mounted paddle shifters. The drive is very rewarding and places the F-Type in an all new league for Jaguar.
F-Type pricing is well within the realm of its competitors. But, options pricing is quite extensive, so make sure you options in if you end up deciding on the F-Type.
It’s not often that I fall in love with a car before I’ve even had the chance to drive it. The Jaguar F-Type was one of those cars. Driving it simply confirmed what I thought — this is one of the best new sports cars on the market, hands down.
If it were my money, I would be buying the F-Type V6 S. It’s the perfect mix between power, noise and practicality. Before you even consider anything else in this segment, get behind the wheel and have a drive. You will not regret it.
NUTS and BOLTS
Engine: 3.0 litre supercharged V6 developing 280kW and 460Nm
Transmission: Eight speed automatic
Safety: Not tested
Warranty: 3 years
Origin: United Kingdom
Price: From $171,045