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Thursday, May 3, 2018

2018 Jaguar F-Pace Review

2018 Jaguar F-Pace Review
The 2018 Jaguar F-Pace is a statement of style over sedans. It looks like it belongs, which we suppose is the point.

The 2018 Jaguar F-Pace mid-size crossover applies the brand’s good looks on a popular SUV shape, which has helped make it the brand’s best-selling vehicle.


Jaguar hit a sweet spot with American consumers with the F-Pace in 2017, balancing performance, luxury, and just enough ruggedness to make it a formidable all-rounder.

The company introduced a new 247 horsepower turbo-4 for the 2018 model year, but we can confidently rate the 2018 Jaguar F-Pace 8.0 out of 10, even before testing the new powerplant.

The smooth, sweeping exterior design and minimal-yet-elegant interior we loved in 2017 carry over for the new model year, which isn’t a bad thing. New for 2018, Jaguar has introduced a light oyster/ebony interior color option available in all trims and a host of new technology features in their limited Portfolio versions.

The F-Pace’s existing supercharged V-6 and turbodiesel inline-4 engines are joined by a new gas option: a 247-hp turbo-4. The new engine is available in base trim levels.

Fuel economy remains competitive, with V-6 models EPA-rated at 18 mpg city, 23 highway, 20 combined and diesel models pulling a 26/33/29 mpg rating. Jaguar’s new base turbo-4 is good for 22/27/24 mpg in the F-Pace, according to the EPA and requires premium fuel.

The 2018 F-Pace offers 8.4 inches of ground clearance, living up to just enough its shared heritage with Land Rover to be competitive in pure utility. The sporty Jag is much more at home carving canyon roads than grinding out a rocky hill climb, displaying brilliant road manners on par with the Porsche Macan, and never betraying its two-ton curb weight.

With a well-trimmed interior and near top-of-class cargo space, the 2018 Jaguar F-Pace more than earns its SUV title. There is more than enough space for five adults to ride comfortably, and head room remains adequate even with a sloping roofline. The driving position remains high with good visibility, though the F-Pace’s seats could use more bolstering to keep passengers planted during cornering.

As of this writing, the 2018 F-Pace has not yet been crash-tested.

F-Pace features and pricing
Base models start at just over $43,000 including destination for 2018, which is in line with last year’s pricing. Trim packages and options quickly drive that price well over $60,000, and buyers will see a sticker of nearly $50,000 just to grab an F-Pace with a supercharged V-6.

Major options include a panoramic sunroof, upgraded leather, megawatt audio, navigation, and larger 20- or 22-inch wheels. A 10.2-in InControl Pro touchscreen and 825-watt Meridian sound system are available as well.

Even in base trim, there is quite a bit of value for the money, with plush trim and a widescreen infotainment unit on tap. Jaguar’s EliteCare warranty is also the best in its class, covering five years or 60,000 miles. Buyers will also get complimentary scheduled maintenance and roadside assistance during that period.

Styling
The 2018 F-Pace is an attractively styled and sporty SUV that doesn’t disappoint on the utility side.

Jaguar’s F-Pace carries a sense of style and refinement usually reserved for vehicles with a much higher price. As such, we’ve rated it 8 for subtle styling cues and attractive design. 

The shared heritage of Jaguar and Land Rover shines through in just the right places, giving the F-Pace the appearance and function of serious utility while maintaining its uptown manners.

In profile, the F-Pace’s sloping roof and tapered windows make for a truly sporty appearance, without aggression.  Its front fascia with wide-open grille slots the SUV nicely into the rest of Jaguar’s line up stylistically.

Inside, Jaguar has opted for a much more spartan look, but has retained functionality in key areas. Even in base models, where seating surfaces are wrapped in synthetic leather, materials and finishes are well thought-out and constructed.

It’s clear that Jaguar has moved away from some of the showmanship that past models’ interiors showed in favor of a much more functional setup. Some configurations of the cockpit can feel dark, which is easily solved with a lighter color choice.

The F-Pace’s controls and dash design are dominated by the infotainment screen, even in base 8.0-inch configuration. The optional larger screen integrates gesture controls.

Performance
The Jaguar F-Pace has something for just about any buyer, we hear a performance version is just around the corner too.

Jaguar has made performance a priority for the F-Pace, and it shows. With even the base turbo-4 jogging to 60 mph faster than many sedans, the F-Pace can be fast while minding its road manners. We give the 2018 F-Pace an 8 out of 10 for its solid engine choices, real-world functionality, and on-road agility. 

The new base turbo-4, gas-fed Ingenium powerplant is good for 247 hp, pushes the F-Pace to a 6.4 second 0-60 mph time, and features 269 lb-ft of torque.

An optional higher-output turbo-4 makes 296 hp and sprints up to 60 mph in 5.7 seconds. In other Jaguar cars, we’ve found that engine to have plenty of pull, but a noisy execution. We haven’t had a chance to get behind the wheel of an F-Pace with the new engine yet, but we’ll update this section once we do.

This engine joins the already-strong duo of choices available in the F-Pace: a supercharged V-6 gas engine and a turbodiesel inline-4, producing 340 hp and 180 hp respectively. S models bump that power to 380 hp for a seriously fast ride.  Jaguar has set the F-Pace up for performance success with all of the three available powerplants providing more than enough power, torque, and fuel economy to keep enthusiasts and everyday-drivers happy.

We found the F-Pace to track well and offer solid road feel at highway speeds. Larger wheel choices in some trims can cause the ride to become jittery on uneven road surfaces, but the suspension setups do a very acceptable job at soaking up the bumps.

The F-Pace’s AWD system works well to keep the SUV under control on any road surface. A new chain-driven system is on board that lets power split from a heavy rear bias to a neutral split from the front to the rear wheels. The setup can constantly vary which wheels get power, based on acceleration and cornering forces. It's a key part of delivering real off-road ability in the F-Pace. Even though it's fitted normally with 18-, 20-inch tires, the F-Pace can pick its way around rocks and mud thanks to some Land Rover-like specs. (Opting for the 22-inch wheels gets a standard set of summer tires, which is not necessarily ideal for bouldering, but you're welcome to it and please, send video if you do.)

The F-Pace has up to 8.4 inches of ground clearance, and approach and departure angles of 25.5 degrees and 25.7 degrees, front and rear. It can wade through water up to 20.7 inches high.
The SUV also gets a programmable driving-mode system that lets the driver tailor throttle delivery, shift timing, and traction-control settings based on the driving surfaces. Select snow/ice, wet pavement/gravel, or a deep-snow mode, and the F-Pace adjusts its power delivery accordingly.

Comfort & Quality
The 2018 F-Pace is bigger than it looks and offers more utility than expected.

The bar is set high for any luxury SUV, especially for a brand with as much to prove as Jaguar, and the F-Pace measures up—mostly.

Jaguar’s vehicle line has made a transition from plush to performance over the past decade, and the F-Pace is a great example. Seating is firm and flat with the ability to adjust lumbar support, though only a little. Driving position is high, delivering a truly SUV-like view of the road.

Drivers may struggle with awkward design choices that place window and door lock in opposite positions from where most would expect. We found this distracting, requiring the driver to take their eyes off the road to locate the correct button. Other controls located on the dash are inconspicuous black buttons, which get lost in the dark trim and become difficult to find on the go.

Slotting between the brand’s XE and XF sedans in size, the F-Pace seats five adults comfortably. Similar in dimensions to an Audi Q5 or a Porsche Macan, the Jaguar even leaves room for tall passengers seated behind tall front seat occupants.

Jaguar has managed to create the appearance of a sweeping, low roofline outside while maintaining plenty of room for rear seat passengers.

The F-Pace’s cargo area is a spacious 33.5 cubic feet, expanded with fold-down seats in some trim levels, all contained by a power tailgate that can be configured to open with the wave of a foot.

Safety
No crash-test data is available yet.

The NHTSA and IIHS have not yet crash-tested the 2018 F-Pace. We’ll wait for the agencies to smash a few of them before offering a score here. 

Jaguar has equipped the F-Pace with a long list of standard safety features, including standard airbags and traction and stability control systems. Optional driver-assist features include lane departure assist, driver-attention warnings, and forward-collision warnings with automatic emergency braking.

One annoying choice we didn’t like last year has returned: no standard rearview camera. The F-Pace offers one as an option, leaving the base model without a feature that comes standard on several cars at much lower prices.

We’ll update this section as crash-test and safety data become available.

Features
The F-Pace is more configurable than a Subway sandwich, but is well-equipped in base trim.

Great as an SUV, the F-Pace offers a bevy of standard and optional features, from tech to colors and trim. With a class-leading warranty on board, the F-Pace is more than a viable option in this class. With all of this in mind, we’ve rated the F-Pace a 9.

The 2018 F-Pace is priced from $43,385 including destination; the F-Pace S is priced from $57,695. It's offered in five versions: Base, Premium, Prestige, R-Sport, and S. A limited-volume Portfolio model will also be available with special appearance and options packages. Buyers will not be shortchanged on choice, as the F-Pace can be had more than a dozen different ways – and this is before any options are selected.

All versions except the base trim are available with three engine choices: 2.0-liter turbo-4s in two tunes, inline-4 diesel, or the 3.0-liter supercharged V6. Base models are only available with 2.0-liter gas engine.

The F-Pace’s standard feature list includes power windows, locks, and mirrors; cruise control; Bluetooth and USB connectivity; 18-inch wheels; a 380-watt Meridian sound system; a panoramic roof; and an AM/FM/XM/HD audio system governed by Jaguar's InControl Touch infotainment interface. Base models come with a synthetic leather interior.

Premium models include 19-inch wheels, memory driver seat and exterior mirrors, rearview camera, garage door opener, and auto-dimming and folding exterior mirrors.

Prestige trim ups the ante by including grained leather seating, heated front seats and steering wheel, xenon headlights with LED daytime running lights, navigation, and front/rear park assist.

The F-Pace R-Sport adds 20-inch alloys, more aggressive exterior trim, full LED headlights, sport-style adjustable seating, lane assist, driver monitoring, blind spot-monitor, reverse traffic detection, and satellite radio.

F-Pace S models bumps the “normal” supercharged V6 from 340 to 380 hp and adds adaptive suspension, “S” body kit exterior styling, special embossing on sport seating, and includes the safety features from R-Sport trim.

Limited-production Portfolio trim includes 20-inch alloy wheels, Windsor leather luxury seating, interior mood lighting, and gloss figured ebony veneer.

Infotainment
Jaguar’s InControl infotainment unit is the centerpiece of the F-Pace’s interior and works well as configured. The 8.0-inch touchscreen is bright and very responsive with a software set up that is intuitive and relatively easy to navigate. Incontrol Pro makes its return for 2018, upping the screen size to 10.2 inches and adding SD card navigation, mobile hotspot, and more advanced swipe gesture support.

Fuel Economy
The Jaguar F-Pace’s engine choices range from good to great on the fuel economy spectrum.

With V-6 models EPA-rated at 18 mpg city, 23 highway, 20 combined, diesel models rated at 26/33/29 mpg, and the turbo-4 pulling 22/27/24 mpg, we rate the F-Pace a 7 for fuel economy.

These figures position the F-Pace competitively against the Porsche Macan and Audi Q5, mainstays in the segment.

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