The Jaguar F-Pace has, in no time flat, sharpened the British brand’s claws. With strong sales everywhere, it just might be the best product they have.
Expectations for Jaguar’s first ever SUV were fairly high. This midsize luxury SUV was packed with promise, pedigree and the backing of a rejuvenated JLR group. In our experience, sampling the F-Pace has been unequal – the first one we drove was in a word terrible. But so far, the last two have demonstrated a marked improvement in build quality and refinement.
Accounting for well over 50% of all Jaguars sold in Canada, it continues to be a solid performer and we continue to enjoy our time behind the wheel. Although we like it, it wouldn’t be our first choice in this segment. Be that as it may, is it the right one for you?
Why you should buy a 2019 Jaguar F-PACE:
- Although all carmakers boast unique designs and the like, nothing looks quite like a Jaguar. The F-Pace is handsome, truly does stand out and is immediately identifiable as a Jag.
- The cabin is also special, despite borrowing some cues from Land Rover. Fit and finish are upscale and the dashboard is styled in a very sports-car like fashion.
- Jaguar has endowed the F-Pace with numerous powertrain options including a diesel option and a powerful supercharged V6.
- There are few visual differences between the base $51,500 Premium and $67.750 Portfolio other than the wheels – a $1,500 or less fix.
- With a larger budget, the new $89,900 F-Pace SVR will provide you with super-car performance and attitude.
Why you should not buy a 2019 Jaguar F-PACE:
- No matter how evolved Jaguar products become, they remain some of the most finicky and least reliable.
- Our own F-Pace and general Jaguar (and Land Rover) driving experiences demonstrates that not all products are equal, which is worrisome.
- Relatedly, the infotainment system continues to be complex and often times slow to comply to demands.
- If you select a Jaguar F-Pace, you will have to lease it as depreciation could be described as catastrophic. For a long-term relationship, look elsewhere.
There are always inherent risks to owning and driving a Jaguar however they are the luxury underdogs, much like Alfa Romeo. And as much as we do enjoy spending time in an Audi, BMW or Mercedes-Benz, a Jaguar (and Alfa) always feels somehow special and not necessarily because there were 1.5 times more BMW X5s sold in Canada in 2018 than all Jaguar products combined.
Jaguars also smell, sound and feel different than the often-sanitized German vehicles not to mention the Americans and Japanese brands put forward. Things happen and work differently in these vehicles which set it apart from the others and clearly, from buyers as well.
My white $75,000 F-Pace S with a few options would have benefited from some colour but otherwise delivered an exotic, luxurious and especially sporty week of driving pleasure. With 380-horsepower, 332 lb.-ft. of torque and a willing 8-speed automatic transmission at the driver’s beck and call, serious fun can be had.
We attribute another unique factor to the Jaguar F-Pace and that it does not generally suffer from the same stigma as the Germans do – somehow, it’s more socially acceptable to drive a Jaguar, much like it is a Volvo or Lexus.
Having said all of this, the F-Pace would not be our first pick although it would in the top five with the Volvo XC60, the Alfa Romeo Stelvio, BMW X3 and at the top of said list would be the Porsche Macan.