The automotive industry’s sport utility vehicle segment continues to contradict the move toward more efficient vehicles, particularly with new legislation on the horizon requiring better gas mileage. Jaguar has never manufactured a compact SUV, but it’s now joining the movement as more buyers are opting for the versatility of the style.
Like other high-end manufacturers, Jaguar, and its new F-Pace are now part of a recent sub-set, which not too many years ago, was an automotive oxymoron — luxury SUV.
The F-Pace, combined with its second updated vehicle, the Jaguar XE, defines the British carmaker’s objective toward a younger audience.
In its marketing and promotion of the two new vehicles, including a recent presentation at Mather Aviation in Mather, Ca., and hosted by Niello Jaguar Land Rover, the nearby dealership, the quest for a younger audience was apparent.
The informal, two-hour presentation was void of car specs or proclamations. Rather, the new vehicles were on display in a hangar, accompanied by sleek aircraft and loud dance music, deejay presiding. Similar presentations were made in numerous cities around the country.
The XE and F-Pace have MSRPs from $34,900 and $40,990, compared to mostly costly F-Type and XJ model siblings, which respectively begin at $61,400 and $74,000.
The crossover will be powered by the new Ingenium range of engines: a 2.0-liter diesel available with manual and automatic transmissions; a 3.0-liter diesel in automatic only; and 2.0 and 3.0-liter gasoline engine with automatic transmissions.
With its 2017 Jaguar XE, the high-end brand has further expanded it family offerings with nearly a dozen options for the luxury sedan.
Two variants are available, with a choice of rear-wheel or all-wheel drive and one of three trim levels. The XE 20d gets its go from a 180-hp, 318-lb-ft 2.0-liter Ingenium aluminum-block diesel four-cylinder, and promises strong fuel economy.
The XE 35t focuses on performance. Iis 3.0-liter V-6 is rated at 340 horsepower 155 mph top speed and predicted acceleration of 4.9-seconds in the standard 0-60 mph test.
The XE 20d and XE 35t are offered with an eight-speed, paddle-shift automatic transmission, a lighter version of the ZF eight-speed used in other Jaguars. The usual rotary shifter control will also be in place in the center console.
Jaguar would be remiss without including its standard bearer, the XKE, in any presentation. A stunning 1961 example was included at the Mather Aviation showcase, and it attracted plenty of attention.
Article Last Updated: May 28, 2016.
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A sports, travel and business journalist for more than 45 years, James has written the new car review column The Weekly Driver since 2004.
In addition to this site, James writes a Sunday automotive column for The San Jose Mercury and East Bay Times in Walnut Creek, Calif., and a monthly auto review column for Gulfshore Business, a magazine in Southwest Florida.
An author and contributor to many newspapers, magazines and online publications, James has co-hosted The Weekly Driver Podcast since 2017.