As humans, we are wary of change. We bemoaned the loss of the cassette when CDs came in, and when buying or consuming music lost any kind of physical identity, CDs were still mourned with sepia-tinted glasses. Yet, change is the only thing constant and one has to adapt to it.
The sports car of yesteryear was tasked with a simple ethos of going fast and making you/it look good while doing so. That’s it. No fancy norms or heaven forbid any talk of ‘efficiency’. However strict emission norms and with the world changing, the sports car has had to adapt. Downsizing has been the answer but sports car fans should not be taking to this new trend with a pinch of salt as it has only made the cars we love, exist in today’s world. Being politically incorrect is no longer in fashion.
The perfect example is the Jaguar F-Type P300 that you see here. This beauty clad in the most luscious shade of red is not powered by a mammoth V8 as instead, it gets a 4 cylinder 2.0l engine. Hold on though, as there is very much a lot of method in the downsizing madness. The F-Type P300, as a result, is a better car and a more confident luxury GT with an irresistible price.
Let’s first address the elephant in the room and yes, if blind -folded you would not guess how many cylinders are pumping inside this British beast. It feels quick and the engine belts out a sonorous roar. To put that into numbers, it does 0-100 km/h in less than 6 seconds and has near 300 horses. Not exactly slow in any sense whatsoever.
It has the sports car pace that you expect with a strong enough surge coming in nice and early, along with a fairly quick shifting 8-speed automatic. If you crave for a more intimate and analogue connection, the superbly finished paddle shifters offer solace here. Also, when driven hard, the engine emits a nice enough roar and while it may not be a V8 bellow, it’s loud enough without being anti-social.
However, the rich sensations that the car’s driving experience doles out is what ultimately goads you along. The steering offers a rich and connected feel while you feel confident to explore its limits as there is enough power to drench you in a heady rush, but not more so as to scare you, unlike the V8, which has a single agenda to scare you silly every time.
The F-Type P300 might be a good drive but the bombardment of the senses actually starts without you even turning the key- a simple glance is more than enough. It looks so good that you would want to park it in your living room, akin to hanging a Monet as it is nothing less than a piece of art in itself. The sensuous shape has only aged better and it is an ode to the classic sports car design. In red, nothing else captures the beauty and essence of a sports car like the F-Type. There is a certain purity to its lines, uncorrupted by the vagaries of ‘modern day’ design.
Inside, you get two seats drenched in leather and a cabin, which provides a stark contrast to the extrovert exterior. The driving environment though is intimate and focused on getting around the job of letting you drive the thing with minimal distraction. In case you want to know, there is a Meridian audio system and other luxuries scattered across the cabin too.
In the end, it is hard not to fall for the F-Type. It is very much an analogue experience in an increasingly digital world and it wears it proudly on its sleeve. The 2.0 engine does not detract from that experience as it only gives you the liberty to explore its potential further. Thus, the F-Type is an alluring mix of the old and new ethos, which works very well, so yes, the sports car has indeed changed, but is all the better for it.
Jaguar F-Type P300
- Price- Rs 1.0 cr
- Engine- 2.0l 4 cylinder
- Fuel Type- Petrol
- Power- 296 bhp/ 400Nm
- 0-100 km/h- 5.7 seconds