The F-Pace’s interior has a classy appearance but closer scrutiny reveals it has hollow-sounding hard plastics and an infotainment system that’s tricky to use on the move
If you’re looking for posh SUV that’s feels sporty inside, then stop your search – buy a Jaguar F-Pace. The driver’s seat feels low in the cabin and you feel like you sit in, rather than on, the car – it’s like a Jaguar F-Type sports car on stilts.
While it looks nice, though, the Jaguar’s interior doesn’t has the hewn-from-granite feel you get in an Audi Q5, so closing a door, or whacking parts of the interior, is greeted with a hollow ‘thud’, and the leather stitching on the dashboard isn’t straight.
All models come with leather seats and funky mood lighting, while luxurious (and more expensive) Portfolio cars get a soft, Windsor Leather interior. R-Sport models look the sportiest – they get sports seats, aluminium trim pieces and R-Sport-branded kickplates on the door openings.
You can make the F-Pace feel even posher with luxury options such as £1,110 Suede-effect headlining and a variety of woods trims – including ash and ebony veneers – all of which cost £320. Adjustable mood lighting – with a choice of ten colours – is yours for a further £210, and for another £392 you can have door sill plates that light up with Jaguar’s insignia – but you’re better off saving your money.
The wavy leather stitching on the F-Pace’s dashboard makes it look like the sewing machinist was drunk
All F-Pace models come with an eight-inch touchscreen infotainment system, called InControl Touch. It’s alright – the graphics are clear and it’s easy to navigate, but not quite as simple to use as the system you get in an Audi Q5. Jaguar doesn’t offer Android Auto or Apple CarPlay but its InControl Apps system means you can still mirror some smartphone apps on the car’s screen. A downside of the touchscreen operating system is that it’s much harder to operate on the move than the systems in the Mercedes GLC or Audi Q5, which use a rotary knob to flick between menus so you don’t need to take your eyes off the road.
The F-Pace’s upgraded InControl Touch Pro system is still operated via a touchscreen but is worth having. It has a faster processor, a larger 10.2-inch screen and a 12.3-inch digital display that replaces the conventional instrument binnacle. This can be used to display a huge navigation map right in front of you, making it a doddle to follow sat-nav directions. It comes with your choice of Meridian sound systems – with either 380W (sounds brilliant) or 825W (sounds even better) – and costs between £1,780 and £2,640 depending which F-Pace you choose.
Go for the Touch Pro system and you can also specify Jaguar’s dual view display (£625), which means the driver can follow sat-nav directions while the passenger watches a DVD on the same central screen. It sounds like a bit of a novelty but works brilliantly in practice.