Do you like V8 performance SUVs? Well, this is the cheapest one you can buy. Is it any good, though?
- Fair value considering the powertrain
- The noise and performance
- Spacious and sized just right
- Options stack on the cost, be careful
- HUD and full-size spare please
At $149,900 before options and on-road costs, you actually get a lot of car for your money.
The 2023 Jaguar F-Pace SVR is a model by the brand’s special vehicle operations that comes fitted with a monster supercharged 5.0-litre V8. It’s basically the hotted-up AMG or M-version, but in this case from a stalwart British luxury car brand.
What makes the value proposition go from pretty darn good to sadly ironic is that it’s also the cheapest SUV on sale in Australia with a petrol V8. Yes, I know about the Nissan Patrol, but we’ll park the big rig under the off-road wagon category.
If you want something more road-focussed, dare I say performance-aligned, and with room for your kids and dog – this is the eye-watering entry price for an SUV with eight cylinders. For what it’s worth, BMW’s X5 M50i Pure shares the title with the same $149,900 starting price.
It goes to show how much the car market has changed, as a flick back to even a few years ago revealed a broader choice for people looking for something potent and sonorous.
These days, your choices are generally electrified six-cylinders or something fully electric. Which begs the next question, should you even be buying a 2023 Jaguar F-Pace SVR or is it outdated?
How much does the Jaguar F-Pace cost in Australia?
The 2023 Jaguar F-Pace SVR sits at the top of the tree and starts from $149,900 before on-roads and options.
There are plenty of avoidable and expensive extras on the options list, so don’t get too carried away in the dealership. It’s worth mentioning that a comparable BMW M or Mercedes-AMG performance vehicle (the latter heading into run-out) starts from around $185,000 – making the Jaguar fantastic value for money. It’s also got more power too.
Our test car was equipped with a stack of options that blew its list price by over $20,000 to a final $170,392 before on-roads. Remember what I said about unnecessary extras?
Regardless of how you spend your money, anyone who opts for the F-Pace SVR model will receive a 405kW/700Nm 5.0-litre supercharged V8 engine with eight-speed sports auto, a performance-tuned chassis with adaptive dampers and configurable drive modes, two-stage exhaust to unlock the ruckus, and a bespoke SVR exterior styling package.
The base car already comes with everything you need.
Get a great deal today
Interested in this car? Provide your details and we’ll connect you to a member of the Drive team.
|Key details||2023 Jaguar F-Pace SVR|
|Price||$149,900 plus on-road costs|
|Colour of test car||Ultra Blue|
|Options||Pixel LED headlights – $4784
Black exterior pack – $3920
Light oyster semi-aniline leather seats – $2288
Machined-face 22-inch wheels – $1560
Meridian surround-sound system (650W, 17 speakers) – $1040
Privacy glass – $950
JaguarDrive control with adaptive surface response – $310
Illuminated metal treadplates – $260
|Price as tested||$170,392 plus on-road costs|
|Drive-away price||$185,000 (Sydney)|
|Rivals||Audi SQ5 | Mercedes-AMG GLC63 | BMW X5 M50i|
How much space does the Jaguar F-Pace have inside?
Inside the 2023 Jaguar F-Pace you’ll find Goldilocks – as in a cabin that’s not too big, not too small, but just right. Over in the first row, the epic 14-way adjustable sports seats welcome you with cushioning arms. If they’re too huggy, simply rotate the dial surrounding the lumbar adjustment switch to adjust how much the bolsters grab your fat bits.
Speaking of which, the lumbar adjustment is also brilliant. Both front seats can properly dig into your spine, readjust your posture, and help prevent soreness on longer stints behind the wheel.
Finally, not only are they heated and ventilated too, but they also look mint. Their slim and dainty profile makes the cabin feel bigger, and seeing a pair of compact bucket seats inside a huge SUV cabin is just plain unusual and cool.
The rest of the cabin is well sorted in terms of storage, with a pair of cupholders large enough for sports drinks and water bottles, a cute key holder just next door, huge armrest with USB power outlets, and generous pockets that extend the whole way across either front door.
Over in the second row, space continues the theme of just right. I’m 183cm tall, and sitting behind my own driving position left me with ample knee, leg and foot room.
I was able to stretch out a little, once again thanks to those space-saving front bucket seats. The rear seat is lovely and contoured, with subtle bolstering and a seat base deep enough to chock an adult’s thighs.
In fact, the whole rear-seat arrangement is an SVR exclusive and a really comfortable place to be. You also get heated outboard pews and a 40/20/40 split with centre armrest too. Other things include door and seat pockets.
I fitted both a Britax Graphene child seat in a rearward position and Infasecure Rally in forward-facing position, discovering ample room for both.
The decent-sized glasshouse and tall roof line mean loading a child into a rearward seat is stress-free and simple. A four-year-old also found the second row easy enough to clamber up into before his father buckled him up.
Boot space comes in at 793L, but that measurement is SAE ‘wet’ and not VDA foam cube, which is what most brands usually quote. That means its boot isn’t as big as you’d first think, but it’s still exceptional. I was able to fit a large full-size pram and bassinet next to a pair of scooters and two backpacks.
Although it’s not the largest SUV in its class, fitting in between medium and large SUVs on exterior dimensions, the boot sure feels like it. Underneath the single-level floor sits a space-saving spare wheel.
|2023 Jaguar F-Pace SVR|
|Boot volume||793L seats up
1842L seats folded
Does the Jaguar F-Pace have Apple CarPlay?
The 2023 Jaguar F-Pace SVR features an 11.4-inch touchscreen display with wired and wireless Apple CarPlay/Android Auto connectivity.
The software interface is great, too, as in it looks high-end and feels easy to use. Response time is swift, as you’ll plug your phone in mid-call and it’ll open Apple CarPlay and take over the conversation without delay. Perfect for the exec on the move.
Our car was also equipped with an optional Meridian surround-sound system packed with 17 speakers including a subwoofer and a dedicated amplifier. I would love to hear the standard system, as this optional one didn’t quite delight me. I always prefer stereo mode to surround, but in this case the stereo wasn’t the best.
The EQ remained quite flat and didn’t scoop or fill the mid with appropriate definition, and the treble setting lacked clarity when driven hard. However, in surround, the system does sound markedly better.
The soft pans from Tame Impala’s It’s not meant to be sounded lofty and large, as did the rest of his breakthrough album Innerspeaker. Something more old-school like Black Sabbath’s Paranoid didn’t quite hit the mark, however.
Is the Jaguar F-Pace a safe car?
The 2023 Jaguar F-Pace SVR scored a five-star ANCAP safety rating after being tested back in 2017.
Although outdated, it scored well for adult and child occupant protection (93 per cent and 85 per cent), but fell down in terms of standard-fit safety assist systems (72 per cent).
Bear in mind that the scoring covers all models and not just our top-spec SVR model.
What safety technology does the Jaguar F-Pace have?
As you’d expect from a flagship and six-figure European SUV, the 2023 Jaguar F-Pace has plenty of driver assist systems.
That includes the usual adaptive cruise control with lane-keeping assist, traffic sign recognition with smart speed adaptation, blind-spot monitoring, and forward and rearward collision monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, just to name a few.
The safety systems are also really well calibrated and far from intrusive, with the adaptive cruise keeping pace on the downhill and not walking away in terms of speed, and the lane-keeping system so gentle you barely feel it.
How much does the Jaguar F-Pace cost to maintain?
The cheapest and best way to maintain your high-horsepower Jaguar is via the brand’s pre-paid service plans. Purchased up-front for $3750, the plan covers your car’s maintenance needs for 130,000km or five years of driving, whichever comes first. That figure annualised is $750.
Insurance is expensive, but this usually comes with flagship performance vehicles. A leading insurer will charge $3323 per year based on a comparative quote for a 35-year-old male driver living in Chatswood, NSW. Insurance estimates may vary based on your location, driving history, and personal circumstances.
Like those expensive trips to the bowser, you pay to play with high-end or high-performance vehicles.
|At a glance||2023 Jaguar F-Pace SVR|
|Warranty||Five years, unlimited km|
|Service intervals||12 months or 26,000km|
|Servicing costs||$3750 (5 years)|
Is the Jaguar F-Pace SVR fuel-efficient?
Speaking of fuel, you don’t buy a supercharged V8 to become a fuel miser.
However, we did see an average fuel consumption hover around the 15L/100km mark. The official combined claim is 11.7L/100km.
If you plan to use even a modicum of its performance, it will cost you.
|Fuel Useage||Fuel Stats|
|Fuel cons. (claimed)||11.7L/100km|
|Fuel cons. (on test)||15.1L/100km|
|Fuel type||95-octane premium unleaded|
|Fuel tank size||82L|
What is the Jaguar F-Pace SVR like to drive?
For the money, there’s nothing quite like it.
Other alternatives from Europe will be similarly good looking, feature similar technology and equally impress your friends, but will also probably come with a highly efficient and maybe hybridised driveline. They might even be fully electric too.
What you’re certainly not getting for similar money is a thumping Mercedes-AMG V8 or beastly Bavarian straight-six turbo, let alone a good old-fashioned V8 stamped FoMoCo (Ford Motor Company) with a gnarly supercharger strapped to its head.
It’s the star of the show, and the reason why you’d spend 150 big ones on this car over something more frugal, ‘newer’ or both. The noise upon start-up is just raucous, with the cold-start V8 throb rattling your car port, garage door, or neighbour’s windows.
Put the boot into it and it just gets better, too, with its sharp and progressive power curve backed by the sweetest of sweet automotive melodies. The engine puts its mighty 405kW to the tyres elegantly so, and directly in contrast to the noise it makes.
It’s fast everywhere in its power band and totally doesn’t mind being lugged in a higher gear from lower RPM either. It’s smooth where it sounds coarse, and civilised to engage even though it sounds anything but.
Which you’ll find yourself doing lots of if you get the chance. I know this is a massively overused sentiment, but in the 200-plus cars I’ve had the privilege of road-testing in my career, only a select few truly saw me ‘taking the long road home’.
I genuinely enjoyed driving it, and continually found excuses to do more needless driving in it. My choice of roads saw me frequent the Southern Highlands district of New South Wales where conditions can be unforgiving in terms of surface, but rewarding in terms of shape.
Some sections I love are slightly off-camber – the ideal place to unstick a big, heavy SUV. The Jag wasn’t taking my invitation to act uncouth at all, with its clever suspension tune dialled in just right for less-than-ideal roads.
You feel the weight, sure, but the steering and general controls provide enough clarity to enjoy, rather than baulk at, what it does. It’s genuinely comfortable too in its softest setting, meaning when you’re not being a tool it doubles as a rather nice and lovely family car.
Unlike some hi-po vehicles from Europe that can be utterly uncompromising as daily drivers due to their performance chops, the F-Pace SVR slots right into the sweet spot as a fast, competent and comfortable road car for five.
|Key details||2023 Jaguar F-Pace SVR|
|Engine||5.0-litre V8 supercharged petrol|
|Power||405kW @ 6500rpm|
|Torque||700Nm @ 3500–5000rpm|
|Drive type||All-wheel drive|
|Transmission||Eight-speed torque converter automatic|
|Power to weight ratio||202kW/t|
|Spare tyre type||Space-saver|
|Tow rating||2400kg braked
Should I buy a Jaguar F-Pace SVR?
Never thought I’d be quoting the mechanic from Mad Max in the review of an SUV, but “She’s the last of the V8s. You can shut the gate on this one. It’s the duck’s guts”.
If you want a seriously high-performance family car around the $200K price bracket, this is easily one of the most effervescent and emotive choices left on the Australian market.
Do me proud please and buy one. Underneath all the V8 fanfare you’ll still find a perfectly sized and comfortable family car.
Use that on the better half.