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Review: Jaguar F-Type S Coupe
Driven March 2014
If looks could kill, the Jaguar F-Type would surely be illegal by now. That’s how amazing this car really looks. I have to admit, I am not a big fan of the F-Type Convertible. It is a good-looking car, but something about it didn't really make me drool; that is till I saw its cousin, the F-Type Coupe.
Traditionally, convertibles have looked better than their coupe counterparts; but in this case, for the first time (at least for me), the coupe looks better. The sloping roofline adds a lot of drama to the car, especially when viewed from the side. While the rear is rounded off with those sleek-looking taillights, twin exhausts sit right in the middle – paying homage to the original E-Type.
Obviously, the F-Type Coupe possesses a lot of go to match all that show. I am driving the F-Type S, which is a mid-range model (above the F-Type, below the F-Type R), that comes with a supercharged 3.0-litre V6 motor. Though a V6 doesn’t sound too fashionable in a car like this, the performance will surprise you. The 2,995cc motor make 375bhp and 460Nm of torque, does 0-100kph in 4.9 seconds, while top speed is limited to 275kph. The eight-speed automatic gearbox channels all the energy to the rear wheels in a savage manner.
And the savage mannerism is pretty evident from the time you hit that engine start button. The engine starts up with a growl, and then settles down at 1,500rpm, burbling all the time. In the day and age of engine sounds being mellow, the exhaust note sounds like Metallica back from the ‘Master of puppet’ days.
On the narrow village roads where I drove the F-Type hardtop, it just flies with a push of the throttle, and as soon as you cross 120kph, there is a retractable rear spoiler that pops up for extra downforce. Even while doing 180kph on the straights, the car felt planted.
The suspension setup is on the stiffer side, which negates body roll when you push it into a corner. Though the ride takes a bit of a hit because of that, but rest assured, you will power out of corners with a big smile plastered on your face.
If you prefer a gentle drive, just change the setting to Normal from Dynamic, disable the active exhaust and the F-Type Coupe feels a bit calmer; mind you, just a bit. The engine keeps selecting a higher gear, and the rpm needle hovers between 2,000-3,500rpm. So yes, this car has a quiet side too, for times when you need a tourer more than an outright sports car.
As I said earlier, the Coupe definitely looks better, drives better and in a country like ours, is more practical than the drop-top. The F-Type Coupe will be launched in India around the third quarter this year, and might be a tad bit expensive than the Convertible. I'm sure Jaguar owners would not mind the price difference, but if I could afford one for myself, my money would be on the F-Type S Coupe.
2,995cc, supercharged V6, 375bhp, 460Nm, 8-speed automatic, 0-100kph: 4.9sec, top speed: 275kph, 1594kg
Really fast, sounds great, and the supercharger ensures there's no lag down the rev range. The F-Type to have.