Editor: Jason “The Bok” Date – 19 Dec 2018

Jaguar as a brand is revered for building incredibly tasty looking sports cars and luxury saloons, however, a couple of years back they gave us the very sporty F-Pace SUV, now they have given us the technologically packed and very slick compact E-Pace SUV.

What is E-Pace?

E-Pace is a premium compact family luxury SUV that slots in below the larger F-Pace and builds on that same sporting all-road prowess which has been created by its larger sibling. The body in many ways resembles the F-Type sports car, with Jaguar doing a great job of pulling off what they do best as a brand, creating an incredibly striking silhouette.

The slightly more compact lines, give the E-Pace and even sharper image than the very attractive F-Pace perhaps even maintaining a more sporty sculpture than that of its larger sibling.

1Large 20-inch alloys, smooth lines and a beautifully well appointed and plush interior space, make for what is a very slick and premium compact SUV from the brand. The E-Pace fares well in terms of practicality with a claimed at 577-litres of luggage loading space with all seats in place and with the ability of 60/40 split rear seats can be folded down to access the full 1 234-litres of utility space.

Powerplant & Drive

The D240 R-Dynamic HSE model has a very impressive 2.0-litre turbodiesel engine that produces 177 kW and 500 Nm of torque all running through its 4-wheels via a smooth shifting 9-speed automatic transmission.

The E-Pace shares its chassis construction with the current-generation Range Rover Evoque, this makes it a rather weighty vehicle. While the down-side to increased weight is a less-impressive fuel economy figures than a lighter car produces and sapping on some of its might, the upshot is that the E-Pace feels incredibly planted and offers a very dynamic “sportscar” inspired drive, particularly made impressive and notable with its ride-height. Interesting fact of the E-Pace is that it weighs in at a curb weight of 1,843 kg and is actually slightly heavier than its larger F-Pace sibling.

3The E-Pace optimises handling owing to Jaguar’s Active Driveline AWD system, which splits torque between the front and rear axles depending on driving conditions and road surfaces, this makes it a great road vehicle with the ability to tackle the gravel too.

The Interior Clever Stuff

The cabin of the E-Pace is filled with many clever gadgets including Jaguar’s 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, which provides a clean and clear instrument display with customisation such as navigation which can be displayed through the gauges.

At the centre of the cabin is a 10-inch Touch Pro touchscreen with voice control and the interface has a tiled layout. Familiar throughout the entire JLR group, the system is easy to navigate and provides a simple base for anyone who has used a smartphone.

2The E-Pace has many features as standard equipment, including dual-zone climate control, adaptive cruise control, front and rear park distance control with rear camera, parking pilot, lane keep assist, blind spot monitoring and a 380W Meridian sound system with 11 speakers. Both from a technological and safety point of view, the E-Pace packs many exciting features.

SA Pricing and warranty

The E-Pace starts at R608,516 for the entry-level D150 AWD derivative, this E-Pace D240 AWD R-Dynamic HSE is priced from R858,213. This test unit’s total price comes in at a rather high R954,000, however, the vehicle is packed with every imaginable toy and feature that you find in the F-Pace and other high-end SUV rivals.

The E-Pace is sold with Jaguars 3-year/100 000 km warranty and 5-year/100 000 km maintenance plan.

Conclusion

The E-Pace competes with the likes of the sharp new BMW X2, Volvo XC40 and Mercedes-Benz GLC. Packing sophisticated technology, sharp-lines and a very impressive drive, it makes a great case for itself and is in-keeping with Jaguars sports heritage and cat-like performance.

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