New car test drive

Jaguar E-Pace test drive

Jaguar’s baby E-Pace may be the smallest SUV in its range, but can it offer big-car practicality and drive?

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What is it?

Coming in as the smallest in Jaguar’s three-pronged range of SUVs, the E-Pace forms an offering for those people who want to sit up high yet without having to deal with an unwieldy, difficult-to-park car.

However, Jag has made sure to make the E-Pace look purposeful while instilling it with a small amount of the sports car charisma found in its F-Type.

Available with a range of petrol and diesel engines, as well as two- or four-wheel-drive, the E-Pace should be able to offer something for everyone – but is this the case? We’ve got behind the wheel in the UK to find out.


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What’s new?

There are a variety of new features on the E-Pace. A range of safety assistance systems have been included on the baby Jag, with emergency braking with pedestrian detection and lane keeping assist combining with a blind spot assistance system and reverse traffic monitor to contribute to the car’s excellent five-star Euro NCAP safety rating.

Our car also benefitted from the inclusion of the ‘Connect Pro Pack’ which adds a 4G wi-fi hotspot – which is ideal for those families who like to stay connected on the move. You also get Jaguar’s Navigation Pro system, which gives real-time traffic information and displays street parking availability, which is handy for those living in urban areas.

How does it look?

 

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Jaguar says that it’s transferred a lot of the design from its F-Type sports car to the E-Pace – check out the rear lights and wide, gaping grille for these – and we’d say the result is successful. It’s a compact package, but the E-Pace brings with it a lot of presence, which is no doubt aided in our test car’s case by the aforementioned alloy wheels.

Thought the design does fly quite close to that of the larger F-Pace, it’s still a recognisable car in its own right. That sharper rear section, coupled with a very short front overhang gives it a much sportier appearance than that of rivals in this segment.

What’s the spec like?

There’s a lot of standard kit included on the E-Pace. You get automatic LED headlights, Jaguar’s full sound system and Bluetooth connectivity too. Cruise control is thrown in, which makes longer journeys a little less tasking.

Like we mentioned, our test car came in high-spec HSE R-Dynamic trim level. It gets the upgraded Meridian sound system (which is excellent), and the full Park Pack which adds a full 360-degree parking camera – a particularly handy feature when trying to get the car into tighter spaces. The upgraded 12-inch infotainment screen is also good to look at, though it falls a little behind rival systems in terms of user-friendliness.

Next page: Step inside and take a drive

Jack Evans
Jack Evans
Articles by Jack Evans are provided for The Car Expert by the Press Association. They include test drives of the latest new cars and features on various aspects of automotive life.

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