The New Jaguar F-Type Has Improved In All The Right Places
Credit: MARK FAGELSON
Aging well is difficult in every area, including car design, but the original Jaguar F-Type is one of those exceptions with strong bones, well-groomed and good genes. When it came onto the market in 2013 as the "spiritual" successor to the classic E-Type, the production of which was discontinued in 1975, it had no obvious resemblance to its predecessor, but still looked perfect: a two-seater sports car that had exactly the right balance of classic GT beauty with precise, modern details. When you saw it, you wanted one. You actually wanted two because it was not possible to choose between a convertible and a coupé. And when you drove it, you two wanted so much that you started doing twisted calculations to make it happen.
It's no surprise that his designer, now retired Ian Callum, an E-type owner and self-confessed Jaguar supporter since childhood, described the launch of the F-Type coupe as the proudest moment in an outstanding career.
After seven years that still seem to be holding up, you may be wondering why Jaguar is releasing a new version in the first place. The basic answer is that the F-Type has not aged as well under the hood and behind the scenes. Technology has come a long way in the past seven years, and this is where Jaguar put on his overalls.
An improved chassis and suspension refine the driving style. A brand new steering system conveys a natural but direct feeling. The V6 engine and V8 go against most industry trends, although the cheaper four-cylinder version remains the same. Inside, a new driver display system brings the cabin into the present. There's even a button to calm the exhaust so you don't wake up the road when you turn it on.
And what about these looks? Somehow it looks prettier and more aggressive what is the jackpot in the car. It's a bit like seeing an old friend who has a new tan and has obviously done a lot of boot camp. The changes are compassionately subtle - bigger grille, squinting headlights, redesigned bonnet, new bumpers, new taillights - but cumulatively tighten things in the right places. After all, good aging sometimes means doing a little bit of work.
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