2014 Jaguar F-Type: Familiar sports car with performance


The 2014 Jaguar F-Type is a true sports car that harkens back to the days when Jaguar was known for two-seat sports cars.

The E-Type, or XKE as it was also called, took the car world by storm when it debuted in 1961. Its shape was often described as one of the most beautiful in the world. The E went away in 1974, and in recent years rumors swirled about Jaguar possibly returning to the sports car game.

The F-Type is essentially a modern interpretation of the E-Type. The shape is trim and athletic with a tough, purposeful stance. The interior is a bit snug but still comfortable. And in a retro touch, the hood even hinges from the front, just the way the one on the E-Type did.

That old E-Type was a stunner in its day and still is today. But living with an imported sports car back then wasn't easy. They could be temperamental; they didn't necessarily like rainy weather, cold weather or really hot weather. There are no such worries with the F-Type. You could drive this car every day, day in and day out.

It's a different game today. Buyers of premium cars won't put up with cantankerous quirks, and comfort abounds, full climate control, of course, and things like heated seats. If it gets a little too chilly, the top goes up or down in 12 seconds, and you can do it on the fly at up to 30 mph.

One thing that hasn't changed is performance. The base engine is a supercharged V6, which makes plenty of power for most drivers. But if you're really craving forward motion, step up to the V8S -- nearly 500 supercharged horsepower.

And, as in back in the E-Type's day, this is a premium car with a premium price tag -- about $70,000 to start, and going with the big engine puts you right about $100,000.

But if you've got the coin and like the looks, this Jaguar has done a good job of picking up where its forebear left off all those years ago.

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