We’ve just finished spending a month with the 2017 World Car of the Year, the Jaguar F-Pace – and it’s been quite an experience. The car spent the first couple of weeks in Dhruv’s custody, after which I took it in my ‘capable’ hands (if I do say so myself). I even managed to squeeze in a quick highway trip to my hometown and back over a weekend.
The first thing that strikes you about the F-Pace is the amount of attention it gets from bystanders. Wherever you go, people gawk and stare at the F-Pace as if it’s the Starship Enterprise. I think the white shade and the large 19-inch wheels of the F-Pace give it a certain authority on the road, and it seems that people really do appreciate the design of the car. Inside, the F-Pace is fairly compact – four full-sized adults fit comfortably, but five are a squeeze.
Out on the road, the 2-litre Ingenium diesel engine of the 20d model works very well, and provides ample performance. But, surprisingly, the fuel efficiency wasn’t especially impressive – with the car averaging between 6.5-8km/l. Yes, you do have to keep the engine on the boil, but, when pushed – especially on the highway – the F-Pace certainly doesn’t lack for performance. It’s very smooth, responsive, and could cruise all day at triple-digit speeds. We did, however, encounter an issue with the stereo system – as there seemed to be some sort of static creeping into the audio output while streamed music from our iPhones to the Jag’s Meridian stereo system. A system reset is likely to do the trick – as is the case so many times with the electrical gremlins in today’s tech-laden machines.
Overall, I think the F-Pace really scores on its style and visual appeal. And, coupled with its ride height and fine performance, here’s a Jaguar that’s perfectly suited to our roads. No wonder, then, that it’s the current ‘World’ car of the year.