Goodwood Test: 2022 Jaguar F-Pace SVR Review

The big, shouty Jaguar V8 isn't dead yet...
11th March 2022
Ben Miles



The heated battleground of the automotive performance war has very much moved into the SUV world. Hot hatches still exist but seemingly in fewer and fewer numbers, the fast saloon isn’t often found away from the German big three and hot estates dwindle. So the horsepower and ego wars move to the newest field.

Jaguar isn’t immune to this new trend. There’s no fast XF anymore, not a single Q-car XE to top the range. While the F-Type still exists it lives with being nearly a decade old with only minor uplifts. The F-Pace on the other hand, Jaguar’s biggest machine, has been blessed with an overhaul and a top-of-the-range SVR model. It has more rivals than before, take Porsche’s ultra-fast Cayenne Turbo GT for example, but the old cat does still have a few tricks up its sleeves.

We like

  • Hilarious engine
  • Significantly cheaper than sporty Porsche Cayennes
  • Interior is terrific

We don't like

  • Boisterous rather than athletic
  • Engine struggles to sip fuel, even when you’re taking it easy
  • Not as flashy as some might want from an uber-SUV



The F-Pace itself is a good looking car, and it has been since it was launched back in 2016. The newest car is a refresh, a facelift in car industry terms, but not a major overhaul. There was a small change to the front lights and face, and a bigger one to the rear, all to bring it in line with the updated corporate look.

But that’s the standard car, this is the Special Vehicle Racing one. As such it is more aggressive than your run-of-the-mill F-Pace. We’re talking big air scoops at the front (probably not real), bonnet vents and bigger sills with aero aids aimed at pulling air away from the wheels more efficiently. At the back there’s some serious slashes housing reflectors and a big rear spoiler. Down below the F-Pace sprouts a quartet of exhausts. It looks good.

Despite the changes it is perhaps more subtle than you might expect from an SVR badge. We like that kind of thing, let your performance do the talking, but those who lust after the extravagant looks of the Cayenne GT might feel they want more.

Performance and Handling


For all of its looks, sheer size and impressive presence, nothing about the F-Pace creates more attention than the boomer under the bonnet. That’s no lie, the F-Pace’s engine is older than the iPhone by a decade – hell it’s older than the iPod. But it’s a brilliant thing. Five litres of supercharged V8 goodness sit in wait of whatever you can summon from it. Sure the engine has been worked on since 1997, it’s definitely not the beast that powered an XK all those years ago (or, weirdly, the early-2000s Ford Thunderbird), but it’s got an old-fashioned nature to it.

Power sits at a square 550PS (405kW) while torque is 700Nm (516lb ft), a number that once seemed insane, but has become more and more common in these SUV and EV-driven days. They are truly modern numbers, but what is out of step with 2022 is that the peak torque doesn’t arrive until 3,500rpm. And that’s not just a dyno figure, you can feel it when you summon everything from the F-Pace SVR. If you’re not in the right gear there will be a pause, some reflection, and then a wump of torque. It’s more of a wump too, not an absolute smash. This is torque that builds through the rev range, pinning you with more vigour as you rush forwards. It’s not delicate, but it feels rewarding as it builds rather than surprising.

The gearbox is a standard eight-speed ZF unit found pretty much everywhere today. It works well, albeit in an almost unnoticeable way. If you’re summoning everything each upshift will be greeted with more torque as the engine sits back into its peak delightfully. Handling is light, with the steering providing a minimal amount of resistance at all times, but without lacking communication. The traction is good on a dry road, inducing some torque-steer as the fronts try to help haul all 2,070kg forward from a standstill, but without too much lateral drama. In the corners it’s more of a wrestle, the suspension is excellent, calming most road chatter without leaving an absolute trifle to deal with when it gets twisty. However there’s still both mass and power to deal with. Especially on a wet road at least one of the wheels will want to escape control at most points. Turn in bite is good, but trailed throttle can bring understeer, pick it up too fast and the back will head off on its own. The brakes are fine, which with two tonnes of mass at times is less than you would wish for.

The thing is it’s not scary, it’s the kind of wrestle you have with a big dog, just a creature that wants to have fun getting a bit distracted. You can bring everything into line with ease because it’s an inherently good chassis. Find a dry road and be prepared to hustle and you’ll be rewarded. You just have to do the work.



The new generation of Jaguar interiors is good. In fact it’s very good, a massive step up from what went before. The F-Pace SVR doesn’t really try to deviate much from the new plan. There’s the addition of some red stitching as you would expect, a bunch of SVR badges and sports seats (excellent by the way) and that’s about it. Well, unless you count the exclusive “sports gearstick” which, considering this is an auto, seems to be just an SVR badge on the standard selector.

The PIVI Pro infotainment that it comes with is excellent, a simple to use system that you could drag more performance out of if you wanted, but you really don’t need to. It’s got g-meters and lap time tracking if that’s important to you but this is SUV, it really shouldn’t be. The sports seats are standard and 14-way adjustable (whatever that means) swathed in a delightful suede and the wheel is good in the hand.

Technology and Features


The F-Pace SVR lists at £77,000, less than a 911, far less than a Cayenne Turbo never mind the GT – in fact it’s cheaper than the significantly less interesting Cayenne S. For that you get an absolute bonanza of technology as standard. The basic carryover from the F-Pace is more than enough; including as it does automatic headlights, heated mirrors, automatic rain-sensing wipers, heated steering wheel, split folding seats, the 11.4-inch touchscreen with PIVI Pro 2, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, DAB radio, Bluetooth, 3D parking camera, lane-keep, tyre monitoring and more.

The SVR piles into that already impressive list with auto headlights, sports exhaust, 21-inch alloys, red brake callipers, heated sports seats, keyless entry, powered tailgate, an excellent Meridian sound system and adaptive cruise control. In fact, the extras on our test car were barely worth mentioning, other than wireless phone charging and an even bigger sound system from Meridian. It took our test car to £81,565, but you’d not be slumming it in the standard SVR.



The SVR is great, that’s about it. It’s got a great big daft engine, some fun handling, and it looks good. Perhaps it’s not as polished as many of its rivals, but this is a bit of a muscle car for the 21st century. Rather than attacking performance with a scalpel and trying to remove all of the characteristics that come from being a high-riding SUV with a dotty engine, the F-Pace embraces them more, becoming boisterous rather than athletic.

But, the question remains if it fits in today’s world. Weighing two tonnes and with a massive engine crammed into the nose this is a bit of a dinosaur, even if the reign of the petrol-powered SUV doesn’t look like a long one. With 23mpg probably the best you can hope for economy wise it’s difficult to make a proper case for buying it over something with a smaller engine. But we think you should take it on its merits rather than its foibles. Look upon it as one of the last of an old age. There’s a decent chance that in a few years’ time people will look to buy Jaguars like this just to get some of that magic feeling back.


Engine 5.0-litre supercharged V8
Power 550PS (405kW) @ 6,250rpm
Torque 700Nm (546lb ft) @ 3,500rpm
Transmission Eight-speed ZF automatic gearbox, all-wheel-drive
Kerb weight 2,070kg
0-62mph 3.8 seconds
Top speed 178mph
Fuel economy 23.1mpg
CO2 emissions 275g/km
Price £77,595 (£81,565 as tested)

Our score

4 / 5

This score is an average based on aggregated reviews from trusted and verified sources.

  • Evo
    4 out of 5
  • Autocar
    4.5 out of 5
  • Top Gear
    4 out of 5