Six months of ownership with a Jaguar F-Pace, does it live up to its British reputation?
It has been more than six months since we took delivery of our 2017 Jaguar F-Pace. As of this week, the odometer ticked just over 10,000km and it’s now time to explore our ownership experience further.
For the record, we bought a 2017 Jaguar F-Pace R-Sport 2.0-litre diesel. You can find all the specification of our car from our first review back in November.
In the last few months, the F-Pace has gone through a few changes. Yes, I’ve modified it, but not in the way you might think.
Firstly, after a few months of ownership, the rear plastic bumper became really annoying to look at. For whatever reason, even when you option up the Black Pack on the F-Pace as we did, the rear bumper remains unpainted, whilst the side skirts, sills and the front bumper are gloss black.
This looks rather poo. It’s almost as if the folks in the UK left it unpainted so they can paint it for the mid-life update and make it look better. Well, too late! I got it done aftermarket.
The difference it makes to the visual presentation of the car from the back is remarkable, and at just $500 (at a Jaguar-Land Rover authorised body shop), it was the best return on investment I could make for visual appeal improvements.
If you look around hard enough you will notice that F-Pace S models with the turbocharged petrol engine have the rear bumper painted gloss black and it looks epic, so that definitely served as an inspiration.
Other than that, I would be lying if I said I don’t regret the black wheels. I think they would look better silver, but I am in two minds about it still; some days I love it, some days I cover my face when I exit the vehicle.
I also regret not optioning up the adaptive suspension. It’s perfectly fine to ride around the CBD even on the optional 20-inch wheels, but get it out on to country roads as we do when we trek out towards the Southern Downs to visit family and it really doesn’t cope with the big bumps all that well.
It does, however, provide a level of dynamic competence that is utterly brilliant and we do enjoy driving it fast. What I would do now, if I could do it again, is actually pick the 22-inch wheels and go for the adaptive suspension for that really big visual impact with better ride comfort.
But clearly, that’s just me, because our F-Pace has a ton of visual impact already, for it gets looked at and noticed wherever it goes. My wife has been quizzed about the car by strangers a dozen times and I too have been approached on multiple occasions. That’s mainly because the F-Pace appears to be extremely rare.
So far, I’ve seen just one other F-Pace in Brisbane, which is reflected in the sales data as in the first five months of this year, Jaguar Australia has sold just 629 F-Paces nationally, only outselling the Volvo XC60 and BMW X4 in the luxury medium SUV segment.
Jaguar’s first ever SUV is being outsold by the significantly older Range Rover Evoque and even our previous car, the Land Rover Discovery Sport, both from within the Jaguar Land Rover family. Why is that?
We suspect it has a lot to do with the F-Pace being initially dismissed by buyers as being too expensive to even be considered. Also, from our anecdotal data of those that put it on their shopping list, the options pricing is a big deterrent.
As we discovered, the F-Pace doesn’t come with some basic essentials as standard (such as keyless entry) and in a world where Mercedes-Benz is offering standard features on the GLC250 in regards to active safety and convenience that leave the F-Pace for dead, it’s hard to argue the point.
Nonetheless, we feel the F-Pace is actually in a totally different class to the GLC. Its interior packaging is somewhere between a GLC and a GLE, or BMW X3 and X5. It’s not as small or as big as either and that, for us, was the main drawcard. Our two- and five-year-old boys and all their associated gear fit perfectly fine in the Jag.
That and the fact that it looks amazing. Even after six months of ownership, I still sometimes just stare at it from different angles. There is not a second of regret having picked the visually stunning Jaguar over its German rivals when it comes to looks.
So far, the interior has stood the kids' test. There has been everything you can possibly imagine spilt on it and it has just wiped off. We wish the red interior better matched the red exterior – that’s probably the only thing worth picking on – but other than that, nothing has malfunctioned. We have the car detailed every two weeks and it hasn’t missed a beat in relation to stains and whatnot.
In terms of the drivetrain, we’ve managed to bring the average fuel economy to around 7.8L/100km of diesel, and this is almost purely inner city driving.
The Ingenium diesel has been wonderful and coupled to the eight-speed automatic, it really doesn’t do anything wrong. Do we regret not getting the 3.0-litre diesel? Not one bit. Never has the base diesel felt inadequate or underpowered; it’s perfectly suited for its duties as a family car and even for those long drives out to the country, and it overtakes on the highway without too much effort.
Throughout the entire six months of ownership, I was expecting my wife would at least damage the wheels or run it into a parking pole. I was almost hoping she would have a minor bingle as that would excuse me from anything in the future with our other two cars on a race track.
But in fact, the first accident that occurred in our F-Pace was my doing as I mowed down an idiot cyclist who decided to ride on the footpath and then run a pedestrian crossing red light. Thankfully, the only damage was to the rather expensive looking bike and some minor scratches on the front bumper which I immediately fixed.
The reason I mention this (apart from my inexcusable hatred of cyclists that do not obey the road rules), was that the autonomous emergency braking system, did sweet FA! Clearly, it’s not meant to see cyclists or pedestrians, but it was somewhat disappointing regardless.
From then on, I have been trying to test it to see at what point it will intervene with braking. I have yet to find a point where it will kick in and actually apply brakes before a potential accident.
It made me question if the system actually works. I turned it on and off in the vehicle settings to see if it would reset and still nothing. So I am planning on doing an actual test with some objects I can safely hit without damaging the car. Will report back on this next time.
So, where else has it gone wrong? Well, as you may remember the rear cupholders had come loose; this was fixed at the dealership under warranty. Also the gloss black door cladding on the driver door came loose.
Strangely, the entire section had to be replaced rather than simply glued back on. The replacement part came unpainted, so it then had to be painted (which also gave me the idea of painting the rear bumper, as already mentioned). Once this was fixed, it hasn’t experienced any further issues.
Every few weeks or so the infotainment freezes or simply crashes and restarts. It’s not a big deal as it seems to fix it self upon restart, but it’s somewhat peculiar. It also disappoints me each and every time when I plug my iPhone in and it doesn’t have Apple CarPlay.
The plastic trim lining around the boot has come loose and in some bits has even started to crack completely, looking like it has come from a car that is 20 years old. We haven’t yet had a chance to get this fixed at the dealership but we imagine it’s yet another minor issue that will be fixed under warranty.
Overall, the first six months of our ownership experience with the Jaguar F-Pace has been terrific. My wife and I love the car and we love the fact it stands out wherever it goes amongst a plethora of BMWs, Mercs and even Range Rovers. It’s rare and we love it for that. It hasn't yet let us down and we suspect it probably won't while it remains under warranty.