By: Jag Dhatt
Why buy an SVR? And even more, an F-Pace SVR? Does an SUV really need to have an insane amount of power? Well, in the most basic sense of it, YES!
The SUV market has evolved extensively in the last decade or so, to the point that it’s the vehicle of choice for many many people. It’s the do-it-all vehicle because it can carry a family, go off-road, and tow. So why not add the in the last element, which is performance? And this is exactly what most manufacturers are doing to their SUV line-up.
The 2022 Jaguar F-Pace has been a favourite of mine for the simple reasons that it has amazing roots, award-winning design, and of course, the name – Jag. Now dump a supercharged V8, 550 horsepower engine under the hood, and you’ve got it all.
I had the chance to drive the refreshed F-Pace SVR in Toronto for a few days and boy was I impressed. Here’s why.
Design and Style:
When the F-Pace was first launched many years ago, it turned a lot of heads; not only that, but it won many design awards. The SVR adds more touches to the already wicked design. There’s a lower front fascia, aggressive hood vents, side fender vents, and a rear spoiler. On top of that, the SVR gets larger wheels and of course, those massive exhaust pipes at the rear. We’ll talk about the exhaust later.
Inside the cabin, which was refreshed for the 2021 model year, you’ll find it both sporty and elegant. The seats are what you’d expect: supportive but still comfortable and a real nice touch is the quilted upholstery. The infotainment system was given a complete refresh and now it works much better than before. Gone is the lagging system that for some reason, kept disconnecting from my phone every so often. And for those who use their phones as their medium, the 2022 F-Pace SVR supports both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
Cargo space is more than adequate in the F-Pace at 34 cubic feet. More importantly, and useful, is that the rear seats have a 40-20-40 split so you can accommodate passengers and cargo in various setups.
The Supercharged V8:
Both the four-cylinder and 6-cylinder engine options provide a good amount of power for the daily commute, and for some sporty driving. But when you drop that 5.0L 550 horsepower and tie to a great all-wheel drive system, then you’ve got a screamer.
The F-Pace SVR is quick, and can run from a stand-still to 100 km/h in just 4 seconds. That’s mighty quick. It may not be as quick as the Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio, but still it’s fast enough.
On the road, you can feel the SVR pull when you stomp on the accelerator. Your stomach gets pushed to the back of the seat and on your face is a smile that gets bigger and bigger as you accelerate. Yes, it is intoxicating. So much so, that even others who turn their gaze in your direction get that contagious smile.
Most performance vehicles, whether cars or SUV’s, have a pretty sweet exhaust note. But really, none compare to the rumblings of the SVR. Out of the quad pipes in the rear comes a sound that is both mesmerizing and mean. From the moment you press the start button, you know the SVR means business. But when you want it to be an all-out roar, put it in sport mode and you’ll scare bystanders away.
The real fun with the exhaust is switching gears, where it sounds both low and rumbly to chirpy and loud. The SVR team really outdid themselves when they designed and tuned the exhaust and the only real way to appreciate it is to hear it.
Having a massive V8 under the hood and 21” wheels and tires connecting the SVR to the road would usually mean a very harsh ride. But not so for this kitty. I drove the F-Pace SVR on highways, city roads and even on roads undergoing construction and, in all instances, the ride was never harsh or punishing. I didn’t have to worry about the ride being jerky enough to spill my cup of coffee. The suspension is perfectly tuned and calibrated, making for a comfortable daily commuter, all the while keeping the F-Pace firmly planted on the asphalt at all times.
Steering is spot-on and very crisp and with the new steering wheel, you can pretty much point the car in any direction, and it will follow. In Dynamic Mode, with Sport Mode engaged, the SVR just eats away at the road; what’s more is that this SVR inspires confidence in the driver as the setup is forgiving when needed.
The question is on many people’s minds: So, is the F-Pace SVR necessary and worth it? Absolutely! This fire-breathing SUV does almost everything you need. Not only will it put many sports cars to shame, but will do so with elegance and panache. This SVR is beautiful inside and out and has a lot to offer for the price. And I’ll say it again – that exhaust note never gets old!
What the 2022 F-Pace SVR offers is unbridled power, award-winning design and of course, the Jag name, which speaks for itself. Yeah, it’s worth it.
Name: Jaguar F-Pace SVR
Engine: Supercharged 5.0L V8 engine
Power: 550 horsepower / 516 lb-ft torque
Acceleration: 0 – 100 km/h in 4 seconds
As tested: $114,876