There can be little doubt that Jaguar has created a gloriously good-looking car when it comes to the F-Type, we’ve driven the convertible but this time we have our hands on the Coupe model. Yet again it’s oodles of eye candy, but how practicable is this delectable all-aluminium design when it comes to whisking a married couple away for a few of days R&R? Chris Bowen found out for EFTM.
The 10 Minute Test Drive
The F-Type Coupe isn’t designed for the “fuller” type human body, this is a low-slung sports car and with that comes the inevitable acrobatics when boarding. But once you’ve pulled off a most ungraceful entry the pod-like seating position is actually quite comfortable and able to accommodate long hauls behind the wheel. The sprawling front bonnet serves as a constant reminder that you’re in something a tad special.
The cabin is far from world class, the German competition still nail an interior like few others. Some of the plastics detract from the otherwise prestigious experience. However it’s far from sub-standard and includes a few novelties. The centre air vent stack raises and lowers when the automatic climate control determines enough air is entering the cabin via the other fixed vents.
The joystick style gear shifter, various toggle switches, rotary dials and other touches give the Jag a real aviation-style cockpit feel. The upper portion of the dash is clad with leather and even opening the glove box is a nice experience with the use of a small aluminum button.
But it’s the exterior design which blows most people away. In recent weeks I’ve had the privilege of piloting a Lamborghini Aventador, Huracán and Ferrari FF. As a head turner the F-Type doesn’t simply shrink in their shadows, it draws attention everywhere and rightfully so. I believe the Jaguar F-Type Coupe is one of the world’s most beautiful cars. With perfect proportions from any angle, it has to be one of the most desirable vehicles around.
The throaty supercharged V6 with its snap, crackle and pop exhaust system provides a fine soundtrack. We tested the base V6 model but even still, speed does build very rapidly in a super responsive, shrieking type of way. The rear end will play up under hard throttle, this is a serious machine in any state of tune and should be treated as such.
The F-Type is mostly a joy to manoeuvre although when pushed hard it can become agitated before calling upon the traction control systems to reign things in.
Ins And Outs
As mentioned we drove the ‘slow’ F-type with a 250kW / 450Nm supercharged 3.0-litre V6 sitting up front. An ultra-sharp 8-speed gear box provides for almost F1-style super quick shifts. I spent a lot of time using the paddle shifters, with the experience being so seamless and fun.
We put the F-Type through its paces via the twisting English style country roads found around the scenic NSW Southern Highlands where my wife and I spent a few days at a Bed and Breakfast. There are few more torturous tests, my wife is far more judgmental than me. She’s written off plenty of exotic cars for simple things like the lack of passenger seat electric controls, missing lights in sun visor mirrors. Harsh, but in reality most non-car people baulk at such things.
The biggest hurdle I thought we’d encounter was the lack of luggage space. Curiously the rear boot is occupied by a space saver tyre which sits on the floor rather than beneath it. Much has been made of this seemingly ludicrous design feature, including by me in the past. However the fact is you can remove the hard cargo cover, this allows for luggage to be piled up to the dramatically slopping rear glass. We had no issues transporting two small suitcases, other bags and miscellaneous gear. The spare can also be entirely removed, Jaguar has a road side service program in place where one can be brought to you if required. There are also narrow door pockets, a net pocket between the seats, centre bin and glove box. Wife = happy.
Another trait that’s noteworthy is the ride quality, the entry-level F-Type misses out on the higher spec adjustable suspension programs making do with the one state of tune. The outcome is a relatively comfortable day-to-day ride, stiff enough for genuine curve eating, but absorbent enough to appease those not looking for track day performance.
The Tech Inside
The Jaguar infotainment system is very basic, sure you score satellite navigation, decent sound system and all the usual smartphone connectivity expected from any car these days. But its layout, interface and clarity is last gen.
Considering the bucks you need to fork out on this type of car it’s a little strange to miss out on blind spot monitoring and even heat seaters as standard.
The as-tested entry-level Jaguar F-Type V6 Coupe kicks off from $119,900 before on roads. I averaged 10.5L / 100km overall, the claim is 8.8L / 100km that’s pretty darn good in my book. Also you need to remember this car can be optioned up into basically a supercar, with blown V6 engines and a crazy V8. At this price you still get the looks plus a massive chunk of performance.
EFTM Rubber Stamp
This is a big boy’s toy, sure there are some real goliaths out there like the Lamborghini and Ferraris I’ve been getting around in (more on that later!). But pound for pound, dollar for dollar and when lined up on a cat walk this is a world class super model. The Jaguar F-type Coupe earns the EFTM Distinction Rubber Stamp of Approval.