First Drive Review: Jaguar F-TYPE

Independent review by Maxine Ashford

5-minute read

Jaguar F-TYPE

First Drive: Jaguar F-TYPE

Explore the key features of the Jaguar F-TYPE in our expert first drive review

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The iconic Jaguar F-TYPE gets top marks in the sports car sector, thanks to its range of powerful powertrains and dynamic driving experience.


  • Superb performance
  • Sporty appearance
  • Powerful engines
  • Excellent range of equipment
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Offering sharper styling, upgraded on-board technology, and even more fire-power than ever before, the Jaguar F-TYPE offers the ultimate in two-seater sports car appeal.

The model we tested underwent a facelift in 2020 which boasted a more muscular, assertive design.

Design and Practicality

The new F-TYPE is more sculpted in the process, with super slim pixel LED headlights on certain models and subtly updated signature ‘J’ daytime running lights.

There is a new clamshell bonnet, revised front bumper, and larger grille for more visual impact. The styling is completed thanks to the flush deployable door handles and air vents.

The F-TYPE's interior is pure quality at every turn with the finest leather upholstery and soft touch finishes – it simply oozes class and elegance without being garish in any way and the sports seats are snug, supportive and easy to adjust along with the power-adjustable steering wheel.

Storage options are very limited, but in all honesty, who cares? There is boot space for 310 litres of kit along with a small central cubby box, narrow door pockets and a drop-down glovebox.

Equipment and Technology

Move inside, and the cockpit is truly driver-focused and features a Touch Pro infotainment system, Smartphone connectivity via Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, a superb Meridian sound system and a lot more.

But the eye-catching feature has to be the reconfigurable high definition 12.3-inch Interactive Driver Display, which can be personalised according to taste.

F-TYPE owners can choose between coupé or cabriolet guises and there are generously equipped trim levels starting with the F-TYPE, then the F-TYPE R-Dynamic, followed by the First Edition and R models.

With such potent performance capabilities, safety systems need to be pretty comprehensive and they are just that with the likes of lane keep assist, traffic sign recognition with adaptive speed limiter, roll over protection system, emergency brake assist, anti-lock brakes, driver condition monitoring and a whole lot more besides.

Engines and Performance

Powering this iconic sports car is a choice of 2.0-litre, 4-cylinder and 5.0-litre, 8-cylinder petrol engines.

All are matched to an 8-speed Quickshift transmission with full driver control via steering wheel paddles or the SportShift gear selector. There is also the option of rear or all-wheel drive.

We tried out the F-TYPE First Edition Coupe – a car that is modelled on the R-Dynamic but gains lots of extra kit, such as an Exterior Design Pack in Dorchester Grey and 20-inch wheels. The First Edition cars will have a limited run of just one year.

This model also featured the very latest powertrain – the 5.0-litre V8 version, and it did not disappoint in the slightest.

According to the latest WLTP testing, it can deliver a combined 26.8-26.1mpg, with carbon emissions of between 239 and 246g/km.

But economy stats will be the furthest thing from your mind when you start up the car with a very welcoming roar.

And it is a sound that just gets better and better, especially if you shift across to Sport mode and fire up the enhanced exhaust tone.

In fact, the F-TYPE is a car that is heard long before it is seen … and then just like that, it is gone.

Even on dreadful, water drenched roads the all-wheel drive F-TYPE was beautifully poised and grounded without the slightest hint of slip. Bends and corners can be attacked with absolute confidence and the steering is really responsive with ample driver feedback.

It feels much sharper on the open road than the outgoing model, which was starting to look a little jaded by comparison. The new F-TYPE is anything but.

It is agile, responsive, and very potent with a wonderfully addictive and aggressive nature.
Maxine Ashford

Much of this attitude is down to the uprated chassis set-up, along with new dampers and springs that aid the improved agility and all-round performance.


All in all, Jaguar has brought its F-TYPE model bang up to date with refinement and performance that is second to none, and it now offers a very viable alternative to sports cars from the German marques.