Engaging, precise, intuitive - one of the best sports coupés on the market today: Tim Barnes-Clay reviews Jaguar's F-TYPE Coupé.
It's a hard life being a car reviewer - I got to try out the Jaguar F-TYPE convertible version last year and now I've had the pleasure of taking the latest hard-topped Coupé for a spin as well.
I immediately connected with the Coupé on a visceral level.
The all-aluminium Jaguar F-TYPE Coupé has got to be the most dynamically capable, performance-focused sports car the automaker has ever produced.
Powerful engine, impressive looks
The vehicle, reviewed in S Coupé guise here, is powered by Jaguar's 3.0-litre V6 supercharged petrol engine.
The engine belts out 375bhp, giving 0-62mph in 4.9 seconds and an electronically limited top speed of 171mph.
The British-built motor sits low on its formidable rear haunches with looks so impressive it's almost theatrical.
The F-TYPE Coupé's dramatic stance is defined by three key styling characteristics.
The first two are the muscular front and rear wings.
The third is the sweeping roof profile which provides an uninterrupted silhouette while emphasising the tapered cabin that sits on wide alloy wheels.
Hidden rear spoiler
In order to achieve the required aesthetic at the rear of the car, the F-TYPE Coupé features a hidden rear spoiler that sits within the shut-line of the boot hatch.
This hidden spoiler rises at speed in order to balance front and rear lift.
The spoiler automatically goes up at 70mph and lowers when the speed drops below 50mph, reducing lift by up to 120kg.
The width of the tail is emphasised by slim, full-LED lamps that wrap all the way around the wings almost to the trailing edge of the rear wheel-arches.
These lamps feature hidden-until-lit technology, appearing solid until one of their functions is activated.
The F-TYPE Coupé also features a "ribbon of light" LED high-mounted brake light which is concealed at the top of the attractively engineered hatchback boot.
The boot is available with a motorised open/close functionality and offers a reasonably-sized 407 litres of space.
Inside, there are leather sports seats and a cowhide-wrapped steering wheel.
The driver-focused cabin clearly conveys the car’s lineage and sporting ability, through a permutation of tight and technical styling.
On the move, it's soon apparent that the Coupé delivers even more driver reward than the acclaimed F-TYPE Convertible.
It combines seductive design with cutting-edge equipment and performance which is truly awe-inspiring.
It'll wheel-spin easily if you take off too fast, but the Jaguar provides you with a unique sports car experience because of its especially rigid all-aluminium Coupé body structure.
The model utilises Jaguar’s eight-speed close-ratio Quickshift transmission which is optimised for engaging driving.
You can flick up and down the cogs with full manual control from the central SportShift selector or steering-wheel mounted paddles.
The magnificent motor also comes equipped with Jaguar's Intelligent Stop/Start system.
When conditions allow, this automatically shuts down the engine when the car comes to a halt and your foot is on the brake pedal.
When the anchors are released, the system can restart the engine in less time than it takes for your foot to move from the brake to the accelerator.
The technology offers fuel economy and emissions benefits of up to 5%.
In summary, this Jaguar is engaging, precise, intuitive and alive and, in my opinion, one of the best real-world sports coupés on the market today.
Jaguar F-TYPE Coupé: Pros & cons
- Dramatic √
- Powerful √
- Gearbox √
- Usability √
- Wheel-spins easily X
Jaguar F-TYPE Coupé: Fast facts
- Max speed: 171 mph
- 0-62 mph: 4.9 secs
- Combined mpg: 31
- Engine: 2995 cc, 6 cylinder, 24 valve, supercharged petrol
- Max. power (bhp): 375 at 6500 rpm
- Max. torque (Ib/ft): 339 at 3500 rpm
- CO2: 213 g/km
- Price: £67,535
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