Jaguar F-Type: the less powerful it is, the more sporty it is

For the past ten years, Jaguar has tended to make us mistake V6s for lanterns. Because this engine widely distributed in the range, including on the sporty F-Type, was tinkered with from the V8, from which it took over the block, with just two condemned combustion chambers. Not enough to gain significantly in lightness. On the occasion of the restyling of its coupe, the fawn of Coventry decided to abandon this engine in Europe, and to assume the fact of offering a large displacement. From now on, the heart of the range is the well-known V8 with 5.0-liter compressor, deflated to 450 hp.

It is with a convertible equipped with this block that we begin our long and pleasant test journey in Portugal, between Porto and Lisbon. The first feeling is that of an erased fear: despite increasingly strict noise standards, the feline has kept its roar. Admittedly, the V8 wants to be less talkative than before at startup: its voice does not really wake up beyond 3,500 rpm. Also, the sound appears a little less melodious than the atmospheric version of this same block, which we knew on the old XK coupe. Nevertheless, the mechanical pleasure is really there, which is no longer self-evident, even at this level of range.

A sportier four-cylinder than the V8

The performances are obviously very honorable (0 to 100 km / h shot in 4.6 seconds, top speed of 285 km / h), but the most recent competing V8s, stuffed by several turbos and offering higher powers, have accustomed to more dazzling. The real disappointment comes from the direction, with unconvincing calibration : variations in consistency, lack of feeling … The previous version, in V6, was more convincing. If we add a substantial weight of 1.660 kg for this still compact car (4.47 m long), we quickly understand that sportiness is not the creed of this Jaguar F-Type intermediate. But, driven at a slow but dynamic pace, it offers the pleasure of a powerful propulsion (all-wheel drive is available in options), quite easy to tame.

By sliding behind the wheel of the entry-level version, powered by a four-cylinder, it is obvious that the F-Type has radically opposite faces. Because with this block, less powerful (300 hp) but above all lighter (1.520 kg in coupe), we can really speak of sportiness. Thanks to precise, direct and linear steering, agility is increased tenfold. The biting and communicative front axle allows you to draw impeccable trajectories: the coupé throws itself eagerly from one turn to another, while demonstrating a fairly reassuring stability in large curves. Very easily, we keep a much faster pace than with the V8 version. The world upside down !

Jaguar F Type the less powerful it is the more sporty - Jaguar F-Type: the less powerful it is, the more sporty it is

Another unnatural fact: consumption. This four-cylinder who likes to be whipped has given us a greedy appetite while driving removed: 23.5 l / 100 km, where we stood at 21 l / 100 km with the V8. A greed to put in part on the back of the continuously variable distribution with hydraulic chamber, supplied by Schaeffler and identical to what this equipment supplier provides to the Fiat group for its MultiAir engines. This system has always had the effect of widening the gaps depending on the driving style. So that at a more moderate pace on the highway, the balance is this time in favor of the four-cylinder: 8.5 l / 100 km approximately against 10 l / 100 km for the V8 450 hp. More sober in current use and more sporty when the whip, this small 2.0 liters is therefore presented as a most interesting choice.

An R as efficient but less wild than the old SVR

But what Jaguar intends to highlight is obviously the R, the most powerful version powered by a 575hp compressor V8, borrowed from the old SVR, disappeared (temporarily from the catalog). This presents a exceptional mechanical character, and inexhaustible performance. The 0 to 100 km / h shipped in 3.7 seconds does not translate well the strength of the recoveries, which seem to run out of steam only above 260 km / h. All this remains perfectly controllable, thanks to the Fairly dosed all-wheel drive, which still retains the playfulness of a drive.

1581626434 793 Jaguar F Type the less powerful it is the more sporty - Jaguar F-Type: the less powerful it is, the more sporty it is

Compared to the old SVR, we must still confess a regret: that of not having kept the exhaust line in Inconel, at the origin of the sound as thundering as bewitching. The rumbling still flanks the thrill, but makes the forearm hair stand up with a little less efficiency. Conversely, we do not regret the new chassis settings. Because if this F-Type R always turns out agile on winding road, thanks to parts from the SVR (wider rolling bearings and upper ball joints) it no longer exhibits chronic instability at high speed: we moderately appreciated to feel the rear want to pass in front of heavy braking.

A very fast GT

Led the knife between the teeth, this new F-Type R benefits from a simply perfect eight-speed automatic transmission. But, as the V8 is full of torque (700 Nm), we can also choose to be in manual mode and keep the third gear. The rhythm is then more fluid, slower but intense pleasure. However, at this little game, the fuel melts like snow in the sun: it is possible to empty the 70 liter tank in less than 200 km… However, on a legal-looking highway, appetite drops to 11 l / 100 km. It must be said that the box pulls long: in eighth at 130 km / h, the V8 rotates at 1,700 rpm…

1581626434 862 Jaguar F Type the less powerful it is the more sporty - Jaguar F-Type: the less powerful it is, the more sporty it is

Its exceptional performance and its behavior again frequentable make it the most powerful of the F-Type also the most sporty? Not quite in our view. Because the consequent weight (1.743 kg), associated with the short wheelbase make that the machine always claims a little attention in the fast curves. This version presents, once again, a personality quite radically different from its sisters. It has a generous and voluble character, while providing a fairly appreciable suspension comfort, which is also the case across the range. A reserve all the same, with regard to the refinement: insufficiently contained road noise, always.

A range as rich as it is varied

At first glance, the F-Type technically evolves only at the margin. But the engineers, who started with a clean sheet of paper for the development, managed to very intelligently build a multi-face range. As for the new look, everyone to judge. One can legitimately rave about the fine and aggressive muzzle of this Englishwoman. But some regret the nod to the Type E of the old front panel. Inside however, little change: style and finish had not aged. The 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster brings technology back in line with the competition, while theunlimited access to Spotify offers a real advantage: so far, only Tesla offers this.

1581626434 477 Jaguar F Type the less powerful it is the more sporty - Jaguar F-Type: the less powerful it is, the more sporty it is

The F-Type is therefore always full of charm and offers, unlike its beginnings, a range of shades finally wide enough to stick to its exclusivity. Its range is certainly not as extensive as that of the Porsche 911, which is one of its main competitors, and it does not have the advantage of the two extra rear seats, a strong argument of the German in terms of versatility . But this Jaguar can go hunting on the grounds of the Alpine A 110 S or the BMW Z4 at entry level, while the R can cross swords with the Aston Martin Vantage. A wide spectrum, which results in very variable prices, ranging from € 64,490 for a P300 four-cylinder coupe to € 132,960 for a R convertible. In any case, that appears fairly in line with the targeted rivals . Even a good deal for the most powerful version.

Jaguar F-Type P300Jaguar F-Type P450
  • Agile behavior
  • Still reasonable rate
  • Actual performance
  • Flattering style
  • Melodious engine
  • Flattering style
  • Comfort saved
  • Propulsion temperament
  • Quite arbitrary engine sound
  • High consumption
  • Rolling noise
  • Two places only
  • Consistency of management
  • Sensitive inertia
  • Two places only
  • Rolling noise
  • performances4/54/5
  • Road behavior5/53/5
  • Comfort4/54/5
  • Practical aspects2/52/5
  • Price / Facilities3/53/5
  • Quality of presentation5/55/5
  • Consumption2/53/5
Jaguar F-Type R
  • Inexhaustible motor
  • Agile behavior
  • Comfort saved
  • Style / finish
  • Rolling noise
  • Consumption / Autonomy
  • Two places only
  • Sensitive mass
  • Performance5/5
  • Road behavior4/5
  • Comfort4/5
  • Practical aspects2/5
  • Price / Facilities4/5
  • Quality of presentation5/5
  • Consumption1/5

For the past ten years, Jaguar has tended to make us mistake V6s for lanterns. Because this engine widely distributed in the range, including on the sporty F-Type, was tinkered with from the V8, from which it took over the block, with just two condemned combustion chambers. Not enough to gain significantly in lightness. On the occasion of the restyling of its coupe, the fawn of Coventry decided to abandon this engine in Europe, and assume the fact of offering a large displacement. From now on, the heart of the range is the well-known V8 with 5.0-liter compressor, deflated to 450 hp.

It is with a convertible equipped with this block that we begin our long and pleasant test journey in Portugal, between Porto and Lisbon. The first feeling is that of an erased fear: despite increasingly strict noise standards, the feline has kept its roar. Admittedly, the V8 wants to be less talkative than before at startup: its voice does not really wake up beyond 3,500 rpm. Also, the sound appears a little less melodious than the atmospheric version of this same block, which we knew on the old XK coupe. Nevertheless, the mechanical pleasure is really there, which is no longer self-evident, even at this level of range.

A sportier four-cylinder than the V8

The performances are obviously very honorable (0 to 100 km / h shot in 4.6 seconds, top speed of 285 km / h), but the most recent competing V8s, stuffed by several turbos and offering higher powers, have accustomed to more dazzling. The real disappointment comes from the direction, with unconvincing calibration : variations in consistency, lack of feeling … The previous version, in V6, was more convincing. If we add a substantial weight of 1.660 kg for this still compact car (4.47 m long), we quickly understand that sportiness is not the creed of this Jaguar F-Type intermediate. But, driven at a slow but dynamic pace, it offers the pleasure of a powerful propulsion (all-wheel drive is available in options), quite easy to tame.

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