2018 Jaguar F-Pace review, test drive
23rd Jan 2018 7:00 am
Priced at Rs 60.02 lakh, the locally-assembled Jaguar F-Pace is a lot more attractive package than it's ever been before.
Rs 20 lakh is a huge amount, even for someone spending high seven digits on a car. That’s exactly the price drop which Jaguar announced on its locally-assembled F-Pace, back in November 2017. So obviously we expected significant omissions from the equipment list and certain other places to justify the massive price reduction of this locally-assembled version of the car, over the imported version.
Well, it doesn’t. In fact, Jaguar has surprised us by offering more equipment now, for a lot less money. While the initial set of buyers won’t be happy with this price correction, Jaguar has now opened up this stylish crossover to a whole different segment of buyers – and made it more accessible with a much better value than before, as well.
This locally-assembled version is now available in a single, fully-loaded Prestige variant. Rather than missing out on kit, Jaguar has instead added plenty that were earlier a part of the optional list. Premium features like adaptive LED headlamps, 19-inch alloy wheels, a 10.2-inch touchscreen with navigation, a 380W Meridian sound system, a 12.3-inch virtual TFT instrument cluster, four-zone climate control, electric reclining rear seats, an activity key and ambient lighting – features that were optional on the imported 2.0D Prestige variant, are now part of the standard equipment on this model.
These new features aside, the updated F-Pace continues to get a reversing camera, panoramic sunroof, Taurus leather seats, 10-way electric adjustment with driver seat memory, front and rear parking sensors, tyre pressure monitor, navigation, keyless entry and go – and a lot more from the original iteration. However, it still misses out on a few features from kit like electrically operable tailgate, lumbar support for front seats, ventilated or massaging seat function and a 360-degree camera. All of these features are expected in a car of this price, now. Also, the F-Pace now gets a space-saver spare tyre instead of a full-sized one which was available, before.
Then there are the interiors which remained unchanged from the imported version. The design is the same and so is the quality of bits – which is really great in certain areas but not quite so, in others. The cabin feels bright and spacious thanks to the expansive glass area all around and the large and comfy seats feel just as accommodating as before.
With this update, Jaguar has discontinued the punchy 300hp 3.0-litre V6 diesel engine. What buyers get instead is a 179hp 2.0-litre Ingenium diesel that comes mated to an eight-speed automatic gearbox, transmitting power to all four wheels. This engine isn’t a scorcher like the V6 that we loved. Instead, it feels just about adequate to carry its weight around. Performance is best in its mid-range beyond 2,000 revs; however, this motor is vocal and the grumbly diesel sounds a bit coarse as the engine spins faster. When it comes to ride and handling though, this Jaguar really shines. It tackles corners with great poise and the weighted, precise steering enhances driver confidence. Its ride, too, is really good in the city with the fat 255mm tyres flattening road imperfections. While the suspension has an underlying stiffness, the F-Pace rides flat as the vehicle builds speeds. To summarize, then – there aren’t any mechanical changes in this new iteration.
The locally-assembled Jaguar F-Pace remains a sporty car, which is enjoyable to drive and comfortable to be driven in. Driving enthusiasts will miss the lusty performance of the 3.0-litre V6 diesel engine. However, the inclusion of several features at this much lower price point of Rs 60.02 lakh (ex-showroom) has made it a very attractive package. It fills into the space between the Mercedes-Benz GLC and GLE segment and is a great option for someone looking at a stylish, premium SUV that brings with it some exclusivity in the segment.