2016 Jaguar F-Type

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The Car Connection
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The Car Connection Expert Review

Martin Padgett Martin Padgett Editorial Director
June 28, 2016

Buying tip

Now that all-wheel drive is an option, there's no excuse for passing on this sportscar just because you live in one of those perpetual-winter states.

features & specs

2-Door Conv Automatic Project 7 RWD
2-Door Conv Automatic R AWD
2-Door Conv Automatic RWD
Coming Soon
15 city / 23 hwy
19 city / 28 hwy

The 2015 Jaguar F-Type fleshes out its sportscar credentials this year with a manual transmission and all-wheel drive.

New for 2014, Jaguar's F-Type added a hardtop coupe edition that impressed us even more than the roadster. The outshining continues this year, as the F-Type lineup adds all-wheel drive and a new manual-transmission option on base versions—and finishes out the lineup with a flourish in the form of the new F-Type Convertible R.

With the F-Type, Jaguar has a real sports car. No shade-throwing at the now-retired XK, but it was a purer grand tourer, not a leaner, meaner alternative to Boxsters and 4Cs and even Corvettes. 

On top of that, Jaguar has added what might be the most significant new features to the F-Type of all—a longer standard warranty, a longer period of free maintenance, and a longer period for free connected-car services.

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Nothing changed with the styling, and that's perfect. The F-Type riffs on the modern, but harks back to a few classic Jaguar cues, and shrink-wraps them around its two-seat body like nubile skin. It's essential, contemporary, and stocked with just enough hints at the taillights and fenders to recall Jaguar legends of the past. Yes, some Maserati and Corvette influences are there, especially at the front end, but the F-Type sums itself up best around its muscular shoulders and thick haunches, both of which show off more vividly on the hardtop.

The cockpit's a focused, intense environment. The gauges tuck deeply into binnacles, while the passenger gets a grab handle—a wordless confirmation of its true mission as much as the orange-tinted start button and shift paddles. There's no wood trim to be found, but carbon fiber and red leather are on the can-have list. Ancillary information is displayed on a big LCD screen; climate controls have prominent positions on the stack as rotary knobs with push functions for seat heating.

All grand-touring bias gets swept away as you climb the F-Type ladder, from standard supercharged V-6 to extraordinary supercharged V-8. The V-6s are 3.0-liter units, one tuned to 340 horsepower, another to 380-hp tune. The 0-60 mph estimates for these range from 5.1 seconds and 4.8 seconds, respectively, and top speeds are limited to 161 mph and 171 mph.

Drivetrain upgrades give the F-Type a wider net to cast for rivals. Base coupes and convertibles can be ordered with rear-wheel drive and a 6-speed manual. F-Type S modes—both coupe and convertible—also come with a manual as standard in rear-drive. All-wheel drive is now offered on 380-hp cars. We're eager to drive both versions.

Last year, Jaguar offered a V-8-powered roadster in 495-hp trim, with rear-wheel drive. That model's been discontinued, but it's fine—the replacement is the equivalent of the shattering Coupe R. Now offered in either body style, with standard all-wheel drive, the big supercharged V-8 in the R models nets 550 hp, and the quickest 0-60 mph time of 3.9 seconds, as well as a rated top speed of 186 mph. An 8-speed automatic is the sole transmission, but adaptive controls and shift paddles make it an eager, quick-responding companion to either engine.

Based on past drives of carryover versions, the F-Type lives up to its sportscar intent, though it still carries a fair amount of weight, which filters off some ultimate steering feel in all models, even the otherwise otherworldly Coupe R. It's crafted from aluminum like the XK, but it's shorter, though still bigger than the Boxster and Cayman, its primary competition, and at 3,500 pounds and up, heavier.

In the end, the aluminum is less about weight loss than weight balance. The F-Type's basic setup is quick and nimble enough, but it's in the higher-output V-6 and the V-8, with adaptive dampers, where it truly intrudes on sportscar territory. It lacks the finer precision of a Boxster or Cayman until you opt into the track-able Coupe R—at which point the rorty, yaw-happy F-Type goes fully in on grip and responsiveness. We think it's more entertaining to drive than just about anything in its class, except the Cayman S and possibly, the Corvette Stingray Z51.

Functionally, the F-Type suffers for being a sportscar, but any more than those worthy competitors. The roadster's trunk is tiny; the coupe has a better rear cargo area that might hold two golf bags if pressed. The cabin is suitably roomy for two adults, so long as their legs aren't 99th-percentile. On roadsters, the convertible top is power-operated and folds in such a way that no tonneau cover is needed. It also lowers or rises into place in 12 seconds, at speeds of up to 30 mph. Both it and the coupe are happily quiet on the go, until you trigger their adrenaline-stirring levels of overrun.

Finally, luxury features haven't been left off the sportscar's menu just to save a few ounces--not if the well-heeled buyer wants them. The F-Type's power sport seats have manual fore/aft adjustments to save weight, but upgraded "Performance" seats are an option, as is full power adjustment. The audio system comes from Meridian, now standard with 770 watts of power. Other standard features include HD and XM radio, keyless entry, and 14-way power seats. Coupes also get panoramic glass standard. F-Type S models now come gratis with the active exhaust system, a flat-bottom steering wheel, and driver-configurable dynamics. R Coupes also get power tailgate; AWD models get a new aero package standard. All versions now come with Jaguar's new InControl smartphone connectivity and infotainment interface.

And as we mentioned, the F-Type now comes with five years or 60,000 miles of warranty, maintenance, roadside assistance, and connected-car services.

The base 340-hp supercharged V-6 coupe costs $65,000 with manual; the roadster is $3,100 more. The 380-hp supercharged V-6 cars start from around $77,300, with a $6,000 uptick for all-wheel drive. The V-8-powered F-Type Coupe R is priced from $103,600, convertible from $106,450.

At the entry point, the standard F-Type Convertible and Coupe both rate 19 mpg city, 28 highway, 22 combined. The F-Type S models both score 19/27/22 mpg. Opt for all-wheel drive and the F-Type S models downgrade slightly to 18/26/21 mpg.


2016 Jaguar F-Type


The Jaguar F-Type nods to its heritage, but draws its own gorgeous path forward.

Though it gets a range of under-the-skin upgrades for the 2016 model year, the Jaguar F-Type coupe and convertible lines don’t change their exterior appearance in any significant ways.

Fortunately, the F-Type is already a stunning design. With shorter and more languid lines than the XK grand tourer, the F-Type’s look evokes hints of the classic E-Type while being completely original and thoroughly modern.

The tall front end wears a large, non-oval grille; LED accents sharpen the nose; round taillights give a bit of a vintage aesthetic. The lines along the side flow organically, the roofline of the coupe especially drawing streamlined, designed-by-nature themes for the eye. Wide haunches speak of power and capability.

Door handles? There aren’t any, at least not in the traditional sense. Instead they’re inset, and pop out only as they are prodded (or with the press of a button on the key fob).

The interior of the F-Type is clearly sports car-themed, with a functional feel belied only by the luxurious swathes of leather. You won’t find any wood here, however—another nod to the F-Type’s fully modern construction and intent.

Review continues below

2016 Jaguar F-Type


Big V-8 power and sound complement a smooth ride for a raucously fun sports cruiser.

While the Jaguar F-Type’s performance has been much lauded since its debut for the 2014 model year, the arrival of all-wheel drive for the 2016 model year gives us a new round of evaluation, and expands the F-Type’s capabilities and traits. Another bonus for the 2016 model year is the addition of a manual transmission option on some models.

The engine lineup is familiar, if slightly different than the original: three variants are offered, including two takes on the V-6, and one extra-potent V-8. All engines in the F-Type coupe and convertible range are supercharged.

At the entry point, there’s the 340-horsepower 3.0-liter supercharged V-6, dubbed simply “F-Type.” Step up to the F-Type S and you’ll get a 380-hp version of the same engine. Opt for the F-Type R and you’ll get a 5.0-liter supercharged V-8 good for 550 hp.

All three engines are available in both coupe and convertible forms, but if you want all-wheel drive, you’ll have to choose the F-Type S or F-Type R. Those who desire a manual transmission can only get it on the V-6 F-Types—and only in rear-drive form.

For models not equipped with a manual transmission, an 8-speed automatic is standard equipment, offering paddles for manual-mode use, and quick, positive shifts for sporty driving.

As you’d expect, the grin factor rises proportionally to the horsepower. The sound, especially, of the big V-8 ripping off acceleration runs will wake the neighborhood—and a lost youth. The V-6 models, on the other hand, feel nimbler and more alive—more like true sports cars.

In base form, the coupe handles better than the convertible—as you'd expect—thanks to a more rigid platform. Add in the adaptive dampers, and the convertible becomes a better option, but still the coupe outpaces the drop-top. Ride quality is a bit stiff, but not jarring, in any model.

Whatever form you choose, however, the F-Type is riotous fun.

Review continues below

2016 Jaguar F-Type

Comfort & Quality

Cargo and passenger space are limited, but the 2016 Jaguar F-Type is well-finished and comfortable.

Two intimate seats, no pretense of vestigial “rear seats,” and a premium on trunk space—the 2016 Jaguar F-Type makes no bones about its role as a sports car.

Sure, cars like the 911—an ostensible competitor—make nods toward greater practicality. Even the Chevy Corvette Stingray offers a surprising amount of hatch space. But the F-Type, particularly in convertible form, doesn’t even really try to be an everyday car. It’s a weekender, and it’s proud of it. With just 7 cubic feet of space in the trunk of the convertible (a bit less than a Mazda MX-5 Miata) or 11.7 cubic feet in the coupe, you’ll have to pack lightly.

That’s not to say it’s not comfortable. It rides well, the cabin is quiet (in both hard- and soft-top guises), and materials are all high-end and well-finished.

Taller occupants will find head room snug, and leg room is a bit short on the passenger side, but the seats are highly adjustable, and quite supportive and comfortable despite the sporty bolsters.

Review continues below

2016 Jaguar F-Type


Strong standard and optional safety tech give us confidence even in the absence of official crash test ratings.

The 2016 Jaguar F-Type hasn’t been crash tested by either the IIHS or the NHTSA, owing to its relatively high price tag and low sales volume.

Nevertheless, it’s a modern car designed with rigidity and crashworthiness in mind, and offers a strong set of basic safety equipment, too.

Standard safety gear includes a full complement of airbags, stability and traction control, and, for convertible models, rollover protection built into the structure.

Optional extras that can improve safety include: a rearview camera; blind-spot monitoring; front and reverse parking sensors; and active torque vectoring via the anti-lock braking system (available on some models).

We'll update this section if and when crash-test data becomes available.


2016 Jaguar F-Type


A new InControl infotainment system boosts Jaguar’s tech-panache for the 2016 model year.

With its grand-touring aspects already evidenced in its size and performance, it’s no surprise that the F-Type’s cabin isn’t the minimalist, stripped-down environment of a pure sports car.

A power-operated soft top on convertible models opens and closes in about 12 seconds, at speeds up to 30 mph. The base sport seats offer power back adjustment, but manual fore-aft adjustment; an upgrade to full power adjust, with lumbar and side bolster controls, is available. A choice of Meridian sound systems is available, while the 2016 model year brings a new infotainment system.

The InControl Touch system offers 3-D maps, smartphone app connectivity, surround sound audio, and remote engine start, as well as an 8.0-inch capacitive touchscreen display. The InControl app functionality includes both Apple and Android compatibility, via a USB connection, enabling app control through the car’s touchscreen. Remote services include automatic emergency services calls in the event of a crash, roadside assistance summoning in the event of a breakdown, and more.

In addition to these features, options packages include such features as adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, a rearview camera, keyless entry, heated seats, a premium leather interior, a choice of black or carbon fiber interior accent trim, and a red leather interior package.

Review continues below

2016 Jaguar F-Type

Fuel Economy

The V-8 F-Type R will pass anything but a gas station, but the V-6 F-Type is rather efficient.

The V-6 versions of the 2016 Jaguar F-Type aren’t terribly inefficient, especially for go-fast sports cars with a decided luxury bent, but the V-8s make no apologies for their performance—or their thirst.

At the entry point, the standard F-Type Convertible and Coupe both rate 19 mpg city, 28 highway, 22 combined. The F-Type S models both score 19/27/22 mpg. Opt for all-wheel drive and the F-Type S models downgrade slightly to 18/26/21 mpg.

The F-Type R line takes another step down the gas mileage hill, with the rear-drive F-Type R Convertible scoring 16/23/18 mpg, and the all-wheel drive convertible and coupe rating 15/23/18 mpg.

The EPA rates the 6-speed manual at 15/24/18 mpg in the F-Type S, and 16/24/19 mpg in the F-Type.

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August 7, 2015
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