Wicked styling, a posh interior, and sharp handling make the 2018 Jaguar F Pace S one of the best SUV’s on the road today. In fact, it was voted “World Car of the Year” in 2017 winning the distinction “Best and most beautiful car in the world”. Goddang.
After spending an extended period of time behind the wheel I’m here to tell why I think it’s a compelling and underrated choice among the more popular of the segment.
And who are the popular kids in this school? Well, that group would be the Audi SQ5, BMW X5, the Mercedes AMG GLE 43 and the Porsche Cayenne. And that’s a real rowdy bunch but sometimes the popular crowd needs a new kid on the block to make them feel a little self-conscience.
As far as car reviews go you can view my opinion on the current state of car reviews in my post: Are Car Reviews Fake? This is simply my opinion based on driving the car and it is completely unfiltered. Proceed accordingly.
2018 Jaguar F Pace S Specs:
- Engine: 3.0-Liter Supercharged V6
- Drivetrain: Front-Engine All-Wheel-Drive
- Transmission: 8-Speed Automatic
- Horsepower: 380 hp @ 6,500 RPM
- Torque: 332 lb-ft @ 6,500 RPM
- 0-60 mph: ~5.1 seconds
- MPG: 18 City/23 Hwy
- Fair Market Value: $50,000+
- Average Rating: 8/10
2018 Jaguar F Pace S Interior And Cabin:
2018 Jaguar F Pace Interior Highlights:
- High-end sport seats
- Quality materials throughout
- Very nice digital dash and MMI
- Luxurious fit and finish
- Class meets sport
When you open the door to the 2018 Jaguar F Pace you are greeted with a view that reminds you why Jaguar sits among the top of the luxury automaker food chain.
The leather feels soft and supple, the dashboard is stitched and beautifully wrapped. The wood grain is elegant and the lighting just right. All of the buttons have a real quality feeling and the headliner is Alcantara.
As you slide into the driver’s seat you can’t help but kind of feel like you’ve made it. It’s just so nice looking that you almost feel bad for people that haven’t gotten to experience it.
A 10″ touch screen is standard equipment. Optional heads-up display and a wonderful Meridian sound system complete the experience. The MMI has a sleek feel to it and can be customized pretty extensively. The only downside is that I experienced a few moments where it seemed to freeze on me out of the blue.
However, by and large the technology works great. Automatic 4-zone climate control works well although navigating to the seat cooling is a bit weird.
Ample storage space is made even better by the easy-to-fold down second row. While the car is sleek and stylish it has plenty of utility and served me well on several Home Depot runs.
Driving The 2018 Jaguar F Pace S
Close that door and lock in the seat belt. Get your sport seat adjusted just right and press that start button. It’s got a growl that’s for sure. By no means obnoxious but it’s just like you would expect from Jaguar – classy.
Now a lot of people might not know about Jaguars racing pedigree and for those that don’t, I will tell you if you spend even five minutes pushing the F Pace you can tell where its DNA comes from.
It makes the sprint from 0-60 in around 5.1 seconds and you feel it. It has just the right amount of visceral feeling. Although the suspension is very firm, it loads nicely and the SUV will take a corner with no problem.
The chassis feedback is phenomenal and the all-wheel-drive works great. As you drive enthusiastically it really inspires confidence. Every corner is kind of a fun experience. And this is nice because let’s face it, most of the people who buy one will be using it to run to the grocery store.
Switching between normal and dynamic drive modes is easy and around town, there really isn’t a need to go with dynamic. I found the setting to be great for highway and fun-time, but around town, the normal drive mode provided plenty of pep with just the right amount of smoothness.
Playing this sort of dual role is tough, so my hat goes off to Jaguar for pulling it off so well. On the one hand, you feel like you’re driving a sports car and then when you need it to feel smooth and luxurious it does. You never really feel like you wish you had another car. That’s hard to pull off.
The F Pace Vs The Popular Crowd
Everyone these days is all about whatever is popular. We all blindly follow each other like a big school of fish chasing bread crumbs. Everyone loves the Audi Q5 and everyone loves the BMW X5.
We all know what the reviewers say about the AMG GLE 43 but let me level with you. It’s okay to be different. In fact, it’s a good thing. Those who are daring enough to jump behind the wheel of the F Pace will not be disappointed.
How does it stack up to its competitors? Well, the AMG GLE 43 has even stiffer suspension, a much less attractive interior and comes in at $68K. The sprint to 60 mph happens in 5.4 seconds, .3 seconds slower than the Jag.
Now for the Cayenne, which is a phenomenal car and which has made an appearance on my Best luxury SUV list. As much as I love Porsche let’s get real, the base Cayenne starts at $67K and that gets you basically chairs and seat belts. While it handles like a dream its comparable performance to the Jag makes it almost less appealing due to the cost of options.
A beautiful and sporty ride all for a competitive price. It’s a compelling choice among the common names you hear of regularly. Where it falls short of some of its competitors is more subjective.
For starters, the seats aren’t as comfortable as some of the others in its class. The field of view can be tight at times and for as large as the car is, there were moments while driving that I felt like the cabin was a little pressed for space.
However, you can find these used in the $50K range right now, which makes them a total bargain for the price. Packed with luxury and performance the 2018 Jaguar F Pace S is a fantastic car that is overshadowed by a more popular group of SUVs.