Jaguar is going after the BMW X1 and Audi Q3 with the E-Pace. But what is it all about and should you care about yet another compact SUV?
Jaguar is on a bit of a roll at the moment. The F-Pace has been soaking up praise left, right and centre and the Special Vehicle Operations division just unveiled the almighty XE SV Project 8. Before that, the XE showed other compact saloons how it's done.
Now it appears Jaguar is starting to fill in the gaps in the increasingly lucrative SUV market with its own five-seat compact SUV, known as the E-Pace, that will take on the likes of the BMW X1 and Audi Q3. No, it's not an electric car ─ that is the I-Pace.
So what else is worth knowing about the Jaguar E-Pace? Glad you asked. These are the facts, including the price, performance figures, dimensions, CO2 emissions and technical specs.
1) Jaguar E-Pace: The numbers
Number time: The Jaguar E-Pace is 4,395mm long and has a 2,681mm wheelbase, providing rear leg room of 892mm. That makes it noticeably shorter than the F-Pace but somewhere between the Land Rover Discovery Sport and Evoque.
Luggage space, meanwhile, is 572 litres, compared to 650 litres for the F-Pace and 505 litres for the BMW X1. As for the weight, the E-Pace is a porky 1,700kg.
2) The interior is inspired by the F-Type
The one area where the F-Pace falls down is the interior, which is solid but looks a bit cheap and nasty. Luckily the E-Pace, which wants to be more of a car than an SUV, has gone for an F-Type-inspired look, which includes the grab handle stemming from the centre console.
3) The exterior is very F-Type, too
Very F-Type in the sense it has borrowed a few design cues, that is, including the head lights and the option of some gigantic alloy wheels. You can have up to 21-inches of metal, in fact, which is substantially larger than the standard 17-inchers.
4) Manufacturing will take place outside the UK
The E-Pace will be the first Jaguar to be built outside the UK, with Magna Steyr in Austria its manufacturing home. Perhaps Brexit is part of the reason, but Jaguar Land Rover's official line is that its UK facilities are close to capacity. The E-Pace will also be manufactured in China for the Chinese market at a later date.
5) You can have front wheel drive
Not since the X-Type has a Jaguar been offered in front-wheel drive, but you can have exactly that (as rumoured) for the E-Pace. Jaguar has said it will drive in a similar fashion to the all-wheel drive model, which will be a plus if true because most SUV owners never actually go off-road anyway.
6) Expect lots of standard tech
To help persuade punters (particularly the younger ones) go for a Jaguar over its rivals, the E-Pace features a 10-inch touchscreen as standard, with the InControl infotainment system running the show. A 4G WiFi hotspot for up to eight simultaneous device connections will also be offered, ensuring everyone is connected to the web while on the move.
7) The handling should be bang on
The F-Pace feels like a car most of the time, which was an impressive feat of engineering. Jaguar promises the E-Pace will be similarly nimble, in part thanks to borrowing the integral link rear suspension setup used for the F-Pace. It also features stiff suspension bushes and anti-roll bars, both of which are said to enhance the sporty feeling.
8) You can choose from a lot of engine options
The Jaguar E-Pace will be offered with three diesel Ingenium engines, ranging from 150PS and 380NM of torque to 240PS and 500Nm. There is no bonkers petrol version (yet), but the P250 offers 249PS and 365Nm, while the range-topping P300 kicks out 300PS and 400Nm from 1,500rpm.
9) It will be slower than the Audi RS Q3
Despite up to 300PS, the Jaguar E-Pace will be a bit slower than some of its scarier rivals. 0-62mph takes 7.4 seconds in the 240PS diesel, while the P300 needs 6.4 seconds to do the same. The top speed, meanwhile, is 151mph for the latter, which is just shy of the 155mph a lot of performance SUVs are limited to. The Audi RS Q3 takes just 4.4 seconds to reach 62mph from standing.
10) CO2 emissions are bearable
Despite the heavy weight, the Jaguar E-Pace is fairly good at keeping CO2 emissions low. The base Ingenium diesel D150 is the least harmful, at a minimum of 124g/km, while the worst offender is the P300 (no surprises there), at 181g/km. The best fuel economy is said to be up to 60.1mpg.
11) Prices appear reasonable-ish
Given the strong level of practicality, stylish looks and seemingly generous base spec, you would expect a higher price tag than the £28,500 touted. All things considered, that gives the E-Pace a huge chance of selling like hot cakes. But then there are a lot of considerably cheaper compact SUVs around, including the popular Nissan Qashqai and the Hyundai Tucson.
12) But can its competitors do a 270-degree barrel roll?
Nope, that would be ridiculous.