From the fashion of the rebellious Vivienne Westwood to the fascinators of Philip Treacy and from the technology that created the Concord SST, to the high-tech gadgetry employed by James Bond to insure the safety of the Crown, the British have made the marriage of style and technology a high art.
Between 1961 and 1975 The E-Type was an icon of style and power, that tradition continues today with F-Type and the exceptionally popular, F-Pace. Jaguar knows how to design and build statement-making models. Adept in anticipating the ever-changing needs and wants of select consumers the designers created the company’s first ever-compact SUV, the Jaguar E-Pace. A fresh face with flair, on-point styling, agility and dynamic driving capabilities, the Jaguar E-Pace encompasses all signatures of the Jaguar Brand.
We drove the E-Pace in Corsica, where the diving conditions allowed us to put this compact SUV to a hardy and heady test. Wet and very steep gravel driveways and muddy roads were such a breeze to traverse that we soon found ourselves doing a bit of mud-racing, before we continued on the winding, climbing roads of this picturesque Island. Even with a few bounces and bumps from during our off-roading our comfort level remained high and we understood that LA’S 405 or London’s M1 would be a dream drive in the E-Pace. The turbo 2.0-liter inline-four model, that ignites 246 hp, with all-wheel drive and a nine-speed automatic transmission, or the R-Dynamic model, tuned to 296 hp with a more advanced all-wheel-drive system, demonstrates that the E-Pace is a complete package of style and substance.
Design starts with the base chassis found on the Range Rover Evoque, and evolves up and out from there, maintaining the same short wheel -base and allowing for spacious cabin. The E-Pace is wider then the competing Audi Q3, yet perfect size for city driving and city parking. Jaguar has loaded the new E-Pace with connected technology to attract new customers. Technology that matches the needs of young families, single professionals, working couples and empty nester that no longer sees a need for a large or mid-size SUV.
The large 10-inch touch-screen that sits atop the center console is standard on all E-Pace models. Owners can have the analogue instrument panel replaced with a 12.3-inch, fully configurable digital screen, and add Jaguar’s most advanced Head-Up Display to display more information with greater clarity directly in the driver’s line of sight.
“Oh, it’s got an attitude to it all right!” says Design Director Ian Callum of the new E-PACE, the most playful car in Jaguar’s 81-year history, and in many ways its most bold yet. “That’s exactly how I wanted it; a balance of masculinity and femininity; not too genteel and certainly sensuous; muscular and curvaceous at the same time. That perfect Jaguar balance.” E-PACE brings an uncommon sense of expressiveness to the compact SUV market. Put simply, it is a much more evolved design; simultaneously more clever and more beautiful than is typical in the segment. “It’s important especially in a smaller car that aspires to a sense of heritage, and a heritage of performance, that it should have that certain attitude,” says Callum. “In some ways the E-PACE is more like an F-TYPE than an F-PACE. Look at the haunches, front and rear, and the way the lines they make intersect, for example. Look at the profile of the roof in silhouette and the way it floats off the back. Look at the headlamps!”
With its long hood with short over hang and wide stance the E-Pace makes a strong and contemporary design statement. The clever mash-up of premium leathers and technical surfaces , accented by the contrasting stitching and sophisticated interior lighting takes the E-Pace to a level not found in this segment. The E-Pace architecture and technology was developed specially for a car of its size, proportion and purpose. On the narrow winding roads of Corsica its Integral Link rear suspension kept us in our lane and it is shared with Jaguar’s range of award-winning, ‘great-to-ride-in-even-better-to-drive’ features. Jaguar’s new Active Driveline AWD system had us performing like a true rally driver through mud and water. Active Driveline AWD steadily disengages when demanded, meaning drive is supplied to the front wheels only, eradicating friction losses and boosting fuel efficiency. Re-coupling occurs in just 300 milliseconds
In the words of Design Director Ian Callum “We designed the E-Pace to be a Jaguar for active people who need space and practicality, but see no reason to compromise on performance. Its proportions, stance and lines express this as a driver’s car, while the interior offers true Jaguar levels of luxury and sportiness” cites Callum. We can only agree – well done Mr. Callum.
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