IS IT THE BEST LOOKING MODERN CAR OF THE LAST DECADE?

Jaguar F-Type (2.0-litre turbo coupe) an F-Type without the fizz!

Gorgeous British sportscar is now available with a little 4-cylinder turbo – but does it still feel like an F-Type?

The undeniably beautiful F-Type has been seducing sportscar buyers for around 5 years now, so at the start of 2018 Jaguar decided to give it a fresh new engine option. With the F-Type already having supercharged V6 and V8 units, there was really only one place for Jaguar to go – down.

The trend for downsizing engines shows no signs of slowing down, and so the F-Type can now be ordered with a 2.0-litre, 4-cylinder turbo. This engine produces around 296bhp, which means it’s certainly not a snarling big cat, but isn’t exactly the timid meow of a kitten either.

Aside from the improved efficiency, there’s another benefit to downsizing your engine and that’s the reduction in overall weight. This 2.0-litre model is actually around 50kg lighter than the V6 and as most of that weight has come out of the engine, the front-end of this F-Type is noticeably nimbler than that in its more powerful twins. Having a more eager nose in a sportscar tends to inspire a bit more confidence, and you gain a real feel for the car very quickly. Time to adjust and build confidence is something that’s often overlooked in sportscars – after all, before we reach the best driving roads we often have to drive through towns and narrow villages.

Enthusiasts probably won’t take to the new engine’s lack of power and character though. It never really feels at home in a car with such a stunning exterior design, the lack of an exotic soundtrack and overall power means it feels quite flat if you’ve driven a car with even an ounce of performance before. So, who is this F-Type really for?

Well, it isn’t for the all-out performance enthusiasts, we can say that for sure. As the F-Type is a fairly comfortable, stylish cruiser it might be better to look at this mild F-Type as the F-Type for people who love its design and luxury, but don’t like to be heavy on the loud pedal. On my 55-mile commute to the Synergy offices and back, it got 43 miles to the gallon and didn’t wear too hard on my comfort, which in my mind makes it a great option for a weekend getaway car.

Ultimately this F-Type sorely misses the charismatic engines it usually comes with, but the 2.0-litre engine does give impressive economy figures and improves the handling slightly – though it squirms under breaking from speed. Not everybody is a petrolhead, and those that aren’t will probably get just as much enjoyment from owning this F-Type as they would the V6.

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Synergy Business Lease Rating: 2/5 – High CO2 emissions mean higher tax.

Synergy Personal Lease Rating: 3/5 – Comfortable, stylish entry-level F-type.

Synergy Lease Overall Rating: 3/5 – A milder flavour of F-Type for those who like to take things a little slower. Synergy’s enthusiasts will prefer the V6 powered model.