2018 Jaguar E-Pace SE Review
By: Kyle Edward
When it comes to the compact luxury SUV segment which is all the rage these days, the Jaguar E-Pace is a compelling option, especially from an aesthetics standpoint. It combines sleek modern Jaguar looks from the F-Pace and F-Type into a cute yet exciting baby Jag. The front looks more like an F-Type with long headlights which cut into the hood while a large grill and lower front fascia make up the rest of the front styling. The pinnacle of the exterior, however, is the rear light which is right from the F-Type and it looks stunning on this little SUV.
You get two powerful engine choices on the E-Pace, they are dubbed P250 and P300. My SE trim level had the entry level P250 powertrain which is a 2.0-liter I-4 turbo cranking out 246 hp @ 5,500 rpm and 269 lb-ft @ 1,200 rpm it's more than enough power getting this little guy from 0-60 in around 7.2 seconds. If you want even more power, you can opt for the P300 engine which is also a 2.0-liter I-4 turbo but it's tuned to produce 296 hp @ 5,500 rpm and 295 ib-ft @ 1,500 rpm which jets the E-Pace to 60 in just 6.6 seconds. Fuel economy for both engines is fair, getting around 24 and 23 combined. I thought the engine was good, lots of low-end torque and pretty good fuel economy. However, I did have a problem with the 9-speed ZF transmission which was frankly horrible. It's plagued with painfully slow shifts, jolty gear changes, and choppy power delivery.
Phenomenal Suspension Focused on Performance:
I had the opportunity to take my E-Pace on some very curvey northern Michigan roads which was actually great fun. You wouldn't expect a compact SUV to handle the roads with such confidence as the E-Pace did. The steering is tight and responsive while the suspension is always on point even on the tightest curves. Everyone will be able to experience the E-Pace the way it should be, with AWD as its standard on all trim levels.
Cockpit Like Interior Design:
The interior is crafted around you and has a cockpit-like feeling with high-door panels, short windows, and a glass roof. I loved all of the angles and different levels of which the interior is made up of. The design has a distinct Jaguar feel which is driver-centric and sporty.
Less Plastic Would Be Better:
There is a fair amount of plastic which makes up the dashboard and at this price point that's somewhat disappointing, plus the steering wheel is made of a surprisingly cheap synthetic leather. The interior is still a great place to spend time especially with the full glass roof but they could do a better job with the dashboard surface.
Sound From Heaven:
The optional premium Meridian sound system is simply fantastic. It's an 825 watt system and has a total of 15 speakers plus subwoofer. The clarity is incredible for vocals which is perfect for your favorite Adele song and the deep base will leave you wanting nothing more.
Very Soft Comfy Seats:
The 14-way driver and passenger seats are both heated and cooled with various lumbar adjustments which make for a very supportive ride. The leather is incredibly soft and of high quality. Jaguar has always been known for high-end leather seating and the E-Pace is no exception.
The Backup Camera Only Works Sometimes:
Unfortunately, our back up camera only worked about 70% of the time. When it did work, it was great with a 360-degree view option which could be changed to the standard backup view as well. It also came equipped with a self-parking feature which can be useful for getting into those tight spots.
Excellant Ultra Responsive Navigation System:
It's not all bad news for the multimedia system. I found the navigation system to be incredibly intuitive and very responsive. They also make it very easy to find your destination with either a name or address, plus you can enter everything on one screen which is a big time saver.
A Sporty Package:
The all-new Jaguar E-Pace is a unique sporty compact SUV with a lot of style and personality. Both engine options are good but we would like to see an updated transmission and a backup camera which functions 100% of the time. The E-Pace is ideal for someone looking to have an adventurous lifestyle and doesn't mind sacrificing a little comfort for a more dynamic driving experience.