The Jaguar F-Type has been with us for quite a while now, and yet, it’s still one of the most beautiful cars on our roads today. As a successor to the iconic and beautifully-designed E-Type, the 2022 Jaguar F-Type has been given an update to make it look even more beautiful than ever before. Even to this day, the F-Type is one of my favorite sports cars, and I was given the privilege to drive it up to Tanay, Rizal with none other than the president of Coventry Motors Corporation, Chris Ward.
One glance at the 2022 Jaguar F-Type is enough for anyone’s jaws to drop, and it looks especially good with the dark green accents scattered on its exterior. The long hood and short rear deck proportions just ooze style, and the flushed door handles that pop out once the car is unlocked are a very nice touch. For this facelift, the F-Type gets slimmer lighting units all around and a reshaped grille, which gives this sports car a cleaner, sleeker look compared to its predecessor.
Open those frameless doors, and you’ll be greeted to an interior that surprisingly looks tame compared to its exterior. It’s still a nice place to be in, mind you, and it does have a bit of character thanks to one neat design trick–the central aircon vents. That’s because the middle row of aircon vents rises above the dash when you turn on the vehicle or climate control. And then as for the rest of the cabin, the materials are top-notch and the interior feels well-screwed together. The InControl infotainment system and the digital gauges that accompany it also work really well, though this isn’t actually their latest Pivi Pro software. It also comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, plus there’s a great-sounding Meridian surround sound system that will satisfy most drivers.
But the main reason you buy an F-Type isn’t because of its electronics or gadgetry. It’s because you want a car that’s all about the driving experience, and it certainly delivers in that aspect. The steering is very sharp and full of feedback, and while this may be the “entry-level” P300 with a 2.0-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine that produces 296 hp and 400 Nm of torque, its small engine up front gives it one inherent advantage over the more powerful V6 and V8 engine options–handling.
Sure, the four-banger doesn’t sound as great as the bigger engine options, but the smaller engine means its front end is significantly lighter–especially compared to the V8. As a result, it changes direction in a feisty manner. It’s kinda like a Mazda MX-5, but with more poke and throatiness to its engine. Oh, and for an inline-4 gasoline engine, the exhaust note sounds good.
The handling of the 2022 Jaguar F-Type is insanely good. Even when pushed through the corners, the grip limits are immensely high. The tires maintain contact with the ground all the time, even if you manage to hit a bump mid-corner. As a result, this is a sports car that you can confidently push even if you’re a beginner driver. The brakes are also very sharp, which makes this a very impressive car to use when attacking winding country roads.
Lastly, the eight-speed automatic that’s manufactured by ZF is the best transmission in the industry for me, and having it fitted in this F-Type gives this sports car a gearbox that’s not just responsive to your inputs, but it also manages to provide snappy shifts and even rev-matching capabilities when downshifting.
And that’s why I’m a fan of cars such as the Jaguar F-Type. This car, along with something like a Porsche 718 Cayman/Boxster, BMW Z4, Mazda MX-5, and Toyota 86/Subaru BRZ is the purest expression of what a sports car should be like to drive. The amount of power that these cars offer, along with the inherent balance that their chassis possess, is just perfect. There are cars out there with an insane amount of horsepower and grip levels that are stratospherically high, you’ll probably only reach them at that rare moment you’re out on track, and where’s the fun in that? But with cars like the 2022 Jaguar F-Type, these are sports cars that you’re able to enjoy on a daily basis or during your weekend drive up in the mountains.
But if there’s one challenge that the Jaguar F-Type is currently facing, that would be its price. At P6,190,000, it’s a couple hundred thousand more than a more powerful BMW Z4 M40i with a bigger straight-six engine, which also arguably sounds better than the Jaguar’s four-banger. Is it worth it? Most enthusiasts as a result will probably flock towards the Bimmer, but the F-Type does have the passion and quirkiness that its more serious German rival doesn’t have.
That’s the gist of the Jaguar brand as a whole. Throughout my whole day of conversations with Mr. Ward, Jaguar as a brand still remains at its core to provide vehicles that are first-and-foremost, all about the driving experience. Most German brands nowadays try to wow you with their screen sizes or how much stuff their infotainment can achieve per minute, but Jaguar as a brand still wants to put the driving experience ahead of how it develops its vehicles, while technology comes second.
As a result, the 2022 Jaguar F-Type may not have the most sophisticated electronics out there, but in the driving aspect, the F-Type is unlike any other sports car out there. It’s one of the purest expressions of a sports car in its segment in the same way how Porsche treats its 718 Boxster/Cayman–putting the driving experience above everything else.