Jaguar F-Type's NZ pricing revealed

DAVE MOORE
Last updated 12:35 14/02/2013
Jaguar F-type
Simply beautiful: Little flash, but plenty of dash, even in base form.

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Jaguar officially launched its new F-type Jaguar in September at the Musee Rodin in Paris, before it met its public at the city's biennial motorshow in the same week.

The two-seater, convertible sports car could be said to represent a return to the company's heartland, focusing on performance, agility and driver involvement. The F-type is a continuation of a sporting bloodline stretching back more than 75 years encompassing some of the most beautiful, thrilling and desirable cars ever built.

Adrian Hallmark, Jaguar's global brand director, says: "Jaguar is a founder member of the sports car segment with a rich sporting bloodline stretching over 75 years, and in the F-type we've reignited that flame. The F-type isn't designed to be like anyone else's sports car. It's a Jaguar sports car - ultra- precise, powerful, sensual and, most of all, it feels alive."

Jaguars enjoy an avid following in New Zealand and although it will probably be much later this year before the F-type arrives here, Jaguar NZ has announced a pricing structure for the car, which initially will be available only as a convertible and with two grades of supercharged V6 engine and a single supercharged V8.

The supercharged 3.0-litre V6 is new and will be used in other Jaguars like the XF and XJ models. It's a modular development of Jaguar's famous 5.0-litre V8, and is available in 250kW or 280kW forms with both versions exhibiting the same free-revving, willing nature that encourages the enthusiastic driver to explore the full extent of the engines' abilities.

The supercharged V8 version weighs 1665kg, and has 364kW on tap and 625Nm of torque allowing it to accelerate to 100kmh in 4.3 seconds and on to an electronically limited top speed of 300kmh, with an emissions rating of 259g/km of CO2. The V8's EU combined fuel consumption figure is 11.1L/100km.

The 1614kg V6 F-type S covers 0-100kmh in 4.9 seconds and a top speed of 275kmh, with its CO2 emissions figure being 213g/km and its EU combined consumption figure 9.1L/100km.

The base model F-type weighs 1597kg, uses its 250kW motor to reach 100kmh in 5.3 seconds and will top-out at 260kmh, while its emissions are 209g/km of CO2 with a combined fuel EU economy figure of 9.0L/100km.

Pricing in New Zealand is to start with the F-type 3.0 V6 at $140,000, with the 280kW S version of the same car asking $155,000. The 364kW F-type V8 will be stickered from $180,000.

The engineering ethos underpinning the F-type is centred on the company's use of aluminium, a forte recently applied by its Tata-owned partner Land Rover's new Range Rover model, which has shed more than 400kg in weight as a result.

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Featuring the most advanced version of Jaguar's acclaimed rigid and lightweight aluminium architecture to date, the F-type has been designed to deliver ideally balanced weight distribution, well-suited for its rear- wheel drive dynamics.

The F-type features all-aluminium double wishbone front and rear suspension and a quick-ratio steering rack. The aluminium architecture has been optimised to provide the stiffest possible underpinnings for the suspension with rigidity gains of more than 30 per cent in key areas.

An active exhaust system, which is standard on the S and V8 S models, has valves that open under load from 3000rpm which allows the exhaust note to build to a sporting crescendo at the red line. The F-type's so-named Quickshift automatic transmission offers a manual paddle- shift override and has a set of eight closely spaced, gear ratios.

Jaguars have always defined sinuous, muscular simplicity and the F-type is no exception, its shape being defined by two "heartlines" forming the front and rear wings.

Ian Callum, director of design, says: "A piece of design should tell a story and this is why every line in the F-type has a start, a direction and a conclusion. If you approach every line individually and get it as aesthetically correct as possible, get the dimensions right, it will stand the test of time."

Taking inspiration from the C-X16 concept car of 2011, the front of the F-type features a new interpretation of the bold angular Jaguar grille from which flows the muscular clamshell bonnet with a signature "power bulge". The all-important heartline begins its journey in the blade dissecting the shark-like gills on either side of the grille before leading the eye to the top of the front wing, emphasised by the bi- xenon headlamps and integral LED daytime running lights, into the door and towards the rear of the car where it gracefully disappears.

That contour is taken up at this point by the second heartline which swells out to form the muscular rear haunch before sweeping dramatically around the sensual low tail, made possible by the inclusion of an active rear spoiler which deploys at speed to reduce lift by up to 120kg.

The F-type's cabin is labelled, with great honesty, a "one plus one" layout. It's asymmetric, using the sweep generated by the grab handle down to the centre console on the passenger side, to delineate the driver's and passenger's places. Further differentiation is provided by the use of different trim materials either side of the cabin, with a more technical finish on the driver's side.

Jaguar has been reticent about F-type variants in the future, but we gather there will in time, be a fully enclosed coupe version of the car, and there have been no denials when we put it to senior insiders in Paris last year that a turbocharged four would eventually form the base for the range, with lighter weight, a manual gearbox and a price closer to $120,000 so that it can be a more direct competitor for the Porsche Boxster, BMW Z4 and Benz SLK, as the V6s and V8s are more targeted at 911 customers.

We'll keep you posted as to the F-type's arrival in New Zealand.

- The Press

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