On paper, the entry-level Jaguar F-Type V6 presents a strong case: it’s rapid and looks incredible. But there’s opportunity cost in this $140k machine.
Base price: $140,000.
Powertrain and performance: 3.0-litre supercharged petrol V6, 250kW/450Nm, 8-speed automatic, rear-drive, Combined economy 9.0 litres per 100km, 0-100km/h 5.3 seconds.
Vital statistics: 4470mm long, 1308mm high, wheelbase 2622mm, luggage capacity 196 litres, fuel tank 70 litres, 18-inch alloy wheels.
We like: Searing performance and exhaust noise, chassis balance.
We don’t like: Handling still quite a step down from V6 S, so-so cabin design.
How it rates: 8/10
WHAT DO I NEED TO KNOW? There is more to the Jaguar F-Type than the loud supercharged V8 engine and striking styling of the flagship model. There are also loud supercharged V6 versions with striking styling.
The entry-level model featured here is one of two in the range: it makes 250kW/450Nm from a detuned version of the engine in the next-F-up, the 280kW/460Nm S. So there’s not a lot between them in pure performance, especially in that all-important torque figure: good news when the lesser model saves you $15,000.
WHAT’S IT LIKE TO DRIVE? In its short time with us, the F-Type has become known for its outrageous exhaust note. This entry-level car does not quite have the window-shattering ability of the flagship supercharged V8, but it’s still more dramatic sounding than most other cars on the road.
It’s definitely not slow: 0-100km/h in 5.3 seconds is rapid by any measure. More to the point, it’s only 0.4sec down on the more powerful V6 S model. The engine is strong and the so-called Quickshift eight-speed automatic lives up to its name.
The steering and chassis are beautifully balanced. Often with sports cars, the least powerful model is more rewarding because it’s lighter and more agile; sadly that’s not the case here, as the F-Type is quite heavy considering its compact size and aluminium construction. At 1597kg, the F-Type V6 is only 17kg lighter than the V6 S (it does have the same engine, after all).
This entry model does miss out on the some of the driver-focused equipment fitted as standard to the S: adaptive dynamics, a limited-slip differential and uprated brakes. So if you’re really serious about driving your F-Type hard, the more powerful model is still the better choice. That extra $15k is starting to look like money well spent.
IS IT EASY TO LIVE WITH? Jaguar has succeeded in making the F-Type cabin an intimate place. You slide down into the driver’s seat and feel very much at one with the car.
The styling and quality is a bit hit and miss: nice clear instrumentation and plenty of character, but some of the materials look inconsistent and a few details border on being gimmicky, like the ventilation outlets that rise up to meet you on startup (Jaguar has a fascination with this type of thing) or the bronze sport-mode switch that is supposed to pay homage to jet-fighter controls.
The standard F-Type cabin scores a couple of points over the more expensive S in our opinion: it has grippier leather/suede upholstery instead of all-leather, and does without the S’s rather silly configurable cabin lighting. Sometimes, less is more.
SHOULD I BUY ONE? The F-Type is not a clumsy car by any means. But still, it’s a machine that suits a more extreme approach: the more power the better, the bigger brakes the better, the tauter the chassis the better. The F-Type does not play entry-level sports car as successfully as, say, a Porsche Boxster. It has finesse, but it’s at its best being forceful.
So there are no surprises here: as you might expect, this V6 model is the least desirable model in the range. But it’s still a pretty special roadster for the money.
EQUIPMENT CHECKLISTAir conditioning: ClimateAudio: CD, iPod compatibleAutomatic lights/wipers: Yes/yesBlind spot warning: NoBluetooth: YesCruise control: YesDriver footrest: YesHead-up display: NoHeated/ventilated seats: Yes/NoKeyless entry/start: Yes/YesLane guidance: NoLeather upholstery: Partial with suedeParking radar: Yes with cameraPower boot or tailgate: NoPower seat adjustment/memory: Yes/NoRemote audio controls: YesSatellite navigation: YesSeat height adjustment: YesSelf-parking technology: NoSteering reach adjustment: YesStop-start: YesTrip computer: Yes
Find your next Jaguar F-Type V6 HERE.