Usually, I would begin reviews by discussing the performance statistics, technical specifications and the way it drives. However, that's not the case with the Jaguar F-Type R Coupe, I'm beginning this one with its exterior. Why? Well, just look at it, it's just absolutely drop-dead gorgeous. Head Designer, Ian Callum and his team have done such a fantastic job ensuring the new F-Type Coupe harks back to the E-Type and my word has he been successful in doing so.
The F-Type R Coupe has delicate and ravishing lines which grabs the corner of your eyes and shouts "look at me!". If the F-Type Coupe were a woman, it would easily take the crown of the most beautiful and vivacious woman to have ever lived. It drives me absolutely crazy to how good looking this car is. Forget about your Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4 or Ferrari 458 Italia, although striking, yes, the F-Type Coupe combines beauty, elegance and aggression in such a mind-blowing package which out-runs any car on the market today. I would even go as far as saying that the F-Type Coupe belongs in the Tate Modern.
But will the performance blow your mind as much the exterior does? Yes, most definitely. According to Jaguar, the F-Type R Coupe is 80% stiffer than its roadster counterpart and you can really feel it on the road. The Jaguar F-Type Roadster's chassis is pure excellence despite it not having a roof for extra rigidity, but driving the Roadster and the Coupe back-to-back would even make the most novice driver realize and feel the difference. The Coupe feels that much more tauter and focussed on the track while the Roadster feels a little more soft. That doesn't mean to say that the F-Type Roadster is a soft wallowy-old hector either.
I was lucky enough to have a go in the range-topping Jaguar F-Type R Coupe which means we had access to a bloody terrifying 542 bhp from an XKR-S derived 5.0-litre supercharged V8. This also meant that this particular F-Type variant could achieve 0-60 in 4.0-seconds flat and eventually hit a limited top speed of 186 mph (300 km/h). No matter what gear you're in or where you are, the Jaguar F-Type R Coupe just absolutely flies in a straight line when your right-foot gets a little too heavy.
Around the corners, the Jaguar F-Type R Coupe feels composed and incredibly light on its feet despite it weighing just over 1,600 kilograms. What I love the most about the Jaguar F-Type R Coupe is the fact that everything happens right beneath your arse, giving you immense confidence and the urge to go that little bit faster around the bends. Step on the loud pedal too hard around a bend and the arse kicks out like a happy puppy, but the most odd thing is, it won't kill you. During a slide, the Jaguar F-Type R Coupe is so easy to handle because of its excellent chassis and power delivery.
The brakes were none-short of absolutely fantastic. The test-vehicle Jaguar provided me even featured the hugely expensive carbon-ceramics which were just awesome. Lap after lap, and zero fade, just endless stopping power. The suspension was perfectly damped to allow the F-Type R Coupe to handle well on track whilst retaining the comfort factor for the road.
While you're showing off doing powerslides, doughnuts and burnouts, one thing that'll get everyone's pulse racing isn't just the exterior, it's the noise too. The Coupe V6 sounds lovely, not too much and not too little, the V6S sounds that bit louder but it doesn't deafen you, then we get onto the V8S in Roadster form. The V8S Roadster crackles, pops and bangs on lift-off and under full-load, I thought that's just about as loud as it gets, but we were wrong. The F-Type R Coupe makes your ears bleed, but for all the right reasons! It does everything the V8S does, but with the volume turned up to eleven, it's an absolutely biblical noise.
The steering is nice to hold too, Jaguar can offer you a F-Type with an alcantara trimmed steering wheel which makes you feel like a pro-racing driver behind the wheel, it also adds a huge element of grip too. In fact, besides the cosmetics, the F-Type's steering is almost up there competing with the 911, you really can feel messages are being transmitted from the road to the steering wheel.
The 8-speed ZF-automatic transmission in the F-Type R Coupe works so incredibly well in tandem with the 5.0-litre V8. It upshifts and downshifts exactly when you want it to, in fact, I found my self trusting the gearbox to shift itself when in sport-mode on the track, that's how good it was. What I loved the most about the transmission was when I downshifted, the exhaust crackled and popped so loudly that I giggled like a little girl. I just wasn't myself driving this car.
Moving to the interior, the Jaguar F-Type V8 R just excels and excels. Although it's all typical F-Type, the fixed roof now makes you feel cocooned and more compact compared to the roadster, making you feel like you're sitting in a £200K+ supercar. Inside, the F-Type R Coupe features beautifully stitched leather, lumbar supportive and heavily bolstered seats which hold you in place when driving enthusiastically. The stitched leather is all over the dashboard and the centre console can be trimmed with real carbon-fibre which only enhances the interior appeal.
One slight beef I do have is the infotainment system. Compared to its rivals, Jaguar's system is old and heavily out-dated. It's slow, unintuitive to use and needs some serious updating. Fingers crossed the Jaguar XE introduces a whole new infotainment system to ensure Jaguar stays ahead of the game.
Jaguar claims that a delicate foot will help the F-Type R Coupe to achieve a combined figure of 25.5 mpg. The most I saw was about 17, but that's because I have no idea what the term 'delicate' means when it comes to driving such a car. On the note of fuel efficiency, the F-Type R Coupe emits a total of 259 g/km. Essentially, this means that the F-Type R Coupe will be costly to tax and insure.
The Jaguar F-Type R Coupe starts at £85,000. Fully specified, the F-Type R Coupe can end up costing you well over £100,000. Although it might not seem worth it, just show me one car which sounds, drives and looks better than the Jaguar F-Type R Coupe.