12 September 2018

Jaguar E-Pace 2018 Car Review

E-Pace sits between the F-Pace and F-Type, however believe it or not this one takes more of its design cue from the F-Type but obviously is a bit more practical.


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Jaguar E-Pace
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Jaguar E-Pace
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Jaguar E-Pace
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Jaguar E-Pace
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Jaguar E-Pace

Don’t be confused by the name: ‘E’-Pace does not mean electric. 

Jaguar NZ believes no other compact SUV is as sporty and “unique”, and certainly it looks the part, with items like the headlights and tapered windows hinting at its racier F-Type stablemate, and a number of internal controls and technical features carried directly over from the sporty coupe.

The cabin is beautifully designed to wrap around the driver, with sporty cues like the passenger grab handle helping to enfold you into the car’s ‘cockpit’. Elsewhere it’s a well-laid-out practical runabout, albeit a luxurious one, with reasonable amounts of storage, an options menu that includes a lot of additional family-focussed spec, and plenty of useful features – depending on variant.

Our test car was a bit of a mix to provide a bit of a showcase as to the possibilities available in the line-up. The body and colour (Borasco Grey) is standard for the S model, the engine was the D180 higher performance diesel engine found in the R-Dynamic S model, and also featured power tailgate and keyless entry which comes standard on the R-Dynamic SE variant.

I first thought this colour looked a bit unfinished; it had a primer grey feel to it. But with the privacy glass tinting, black trim and wheels, it was a combination I grew to love and found it hard to give back!

I took the Jag on a bit of a weekend drive on a good mix of motorway and winding roads, which the E-Pace processed with ease. The SUV suspension was firm, but comfortable and the turbo diesel supplied a generous helping of power and was relatively quiet in doing so.

The steering wheel and instrument cluster are taken directly from the F-type and are straight forward to use and easy to decipher the information on the display. The sim card fitted to our test car allowed internet browsing when stationary and I’m sure it was adding more “Google” search functionality when searching locations and programming destinations into the navigation. It didn’t seem as hard to use as some systems where you have to be overly specific in order to key in a destination. All models feature WiFi hotspot capability.

Park Pack is available on all variants which add 360deg parking aids, rear traffic monitor and Park assist. An interesting feature is Torque vectoring by braking- Providing controlled independent braking on the individual inside front and rear wheels, the system delivers outstanding sports car-like agility and added driver confidence.

A great finishing touch are the puddle lamps, they look like a scene from a Lion King movie, with a small shadow of a cub following its stealthy looking parent, projected onto the ground under the door mirrors. 

At a glance

Models

E-Pace S, R-Dynamic S, R-Dynamic SE

Engine

Petrol and Diesel 4-Cylinder

Price

From $69,990

ANCAP safety rating

5-Star

Power and Torque

From 110kW- 221kW

Transmission

Nine-speed auto

Fuel economy

From 5.6L/100km

Towing capacity

750kg unbraked, 1,800kg braked

2WD/4WD/AWD

AWD

Seating capacity

5

Luggage capacity/payload

577L  and 1,234L rear seats down

Safety systems

  • Electronic Brake Force Distribution
  • Front and side Airbags
  • Autonomous emergency braking
  • Pedestrian Airbag System
  • Reverse camera
  • Lane Keep/Departure warning system
  • Torque Vectoring by Braking
  • Full length side window curtain airbag
5 Star ANCAP
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