Car review: Jaguar F-Pace SVR in the UAE
How far do you believe a vehicle's colour influences your opinion on whether you like it or not? As professionals, we tend not to acknowledge the paintwork's importance, though, you want to see the kindergarten scramble for the neon and electric shades during a group test drive with other commentators. The rush and subsequent bartering is hilarious.
When it comes down to it, the notion is really pretty straightforward: we all want a decent machine to drive but, being the fickle species we are, we also demand it looks good. You can therefore imagine our faces when a Jaguar F-Pace SVR turned up in the exact same shade you see in the pictures, complete with that sporty red and black leather interior.
We were already aware of the SUV's performance figures (this was no ordinary base F-Pace) and its shape, so were chomping at the bit to try it for ourselves. But that exterior tone Jaguar names 'Ultra Blue' and inside trim termed 'Ebony/ Pimento Red with red stitching' was the icing on a particularly lovely cake. And we were hungry.
Tell us the numbers
Okay, you get a large amount of space for the kids and the dog and the surfboard you keep telling yourself you're going to buy, blah, blah, blah, so when you look in the mirror you will indeed see your ungrateful sprogs on their phones instead of a beautiful rear engine. That's par for the course. Yet when you're driving this supposed family car it feels anything but. A five-litre supercharged V8 produces a whopping 550hp delivering a 0-100km/h time of 4.3 seconds and a top speed of 283km/h. We'll just let those numbers sink in. Your nominally school-run/commuter/ shopping-mobile is able to sprint to 100km/h in the same time it would take a three-year-old Aston Martin Rapide S. You can hear it too. That V8 makes a lovely sound shifting up, as do the quad tailpipes with 95mm finisher which come as standard.
We don't often like to use the word 'tight', though cannot think of a description more befitting. Usually these cars have a tendency to roll about the place, but the SVR continues its class-defying act keeping itself hunkered to the ground and offering a degree of agility. Obviously aerodynamics dictate it's not going to be as fun nipping about in say a European hatchback, but for a vehicle with a generous cabin and boot, it is sprightly.
What else did you like?
We mentioned the colour of the seats, but not the quality. Everything inside the SVR is sumptuous to the touch. From the fine leather to the SVR symbol skilfully embossed therein and the slick, sliding panoramic roof, you're not going to forget you're in the luxury segment in a hurry. You are also furnished with all the usual gadgets and individual climate controls, although overall we have to highlight this F-Pace's spirit as a standout attribute. It is simply a monumentally good-looking and fun piece of equipment that happens to be a SUV in name alone. In every other aspect, it's a real joy.
Engine: 5-litre V8 Supercharged
0-100km/h: 4.3 seconds
Top speed: 283mk/h
Starting price: Dhs404,775