By on September 29, 2014

2014 Jaguar F-type convertible rear left

I felt very conflicted following a quick nighttime Boston-to-New York City drive in this new Jag. It just did not meet my expectations. The car drove nice on the twisty and hilly Merritt Parkway but it was neither the sports car I desired, nor the grand tourer that the XKR was. Something was clearly wrong. Upon reaching my destination I carefully re-read Derek’s reviews and quickly realized that I am an idiot and that this F-Type has failed me in another way altogether.

2014 Jaguar F-type convertible top up top down

Like any proper modern sports car, the F-Type has a number of settings and adjustments available to its driver; suspension, transmission, steering, stability control, and even exhaust. I fiddled with the transmission and the exhaust because those settings were convenient, but I did not know that the others even existed. In my re-reading of Derek’s F-Type V6S review I came upon these words:

“Oh, and you absolutely must get the car with the “Configurable Dynamic Mode”, which adds another $3,000 to the base price, but effectively gives you two cars for the price of one.”

Son of a gun. My car had that option but I just dismissed it as a stability control setting that allows you to wag the rear-end like a pro, which I had no desire to do. Selecting it changes suspension, steering, transmission, and exhaust settings to ‘dynamic’. Like in many other sports cars, notably BMW’s M cars, this button transforms a smooth and quiet roadster that my mother would love, into a loud and quick sports car that I want. I am not exactly sure what the checkered flag button physically does, but all that a potential buyer needs to know is that it takes a vehicle that feels like an entry-level Mercedes SL and turns it into a Porsche Boxster.

2014 Jaguar F-type convertible dash

But I had another issue with this Jag, and here is where this Jag has clearly failed me. In his review, Derek was going on all about how every woman in the world loved this car and its driver. Reading deeper into his writing, women were literally throwing themselves at Derek just to be chauffeured around in the slick new roadster for a bit. The car has transformed him from being a humble but righteous autoscribe into a playboy that surpasses the likes of Lapo Elkann.

That did not happen to me. Not a single woman has expressed any interest what so ever in this car. I even made a point of dressing a little better when driving it and ensuring that my pricey mechanical timepiece was visible to all passer-bys. Not one woman even looked at me. Not even my wife. Nada. Zilch. Zero. Point. Zero. Now I’m no Jack Baruth, I got zero game, but c’mon, I did not even get a gander from the ladies.

2014 Jaguar F-type convertible exterior details 2

But the car did attract a lot attention, except that it was from every single balding middle-aged man in vicinity. They inquired about the British Racing Green paint and how it glistened in the sun. They needed to know the engine specs. One asked if it was a V12. They needed to hear it. I was tailgated by a young guy in a 3-series and challenged to a drag race by a Cayman owner. Even a homeless man yelled at me from across the sidewalk “how about five bucks for a bottle wine, stylin’ man!?” Five bucks!

I understand that attention as the F-Type is a gorgeous car. From bonnet to boot, there is not a wrong line on this car. There are however some questionable details and cost-cutting, such as the sculpted bolts on the rims of the wheels or plastic roll-bar covers which should really be aluminum. Open the huge front-hinged bonnet and you’ll see a plastic engine cover and not hand-polished aluminum velocity stacks. No complaints about the interior, other than outside visibility with the top up and the outdated infotainment system. The seats are adjustable in umpteen ways and wrapped in soft leather that has an intoxicating smell.  Only the British can do leather like this.

2014 Jaguar F-type convertible interior details

While fun in the corners and highway ramps, the ride is bouncy when the road gets bumpy. There was also surprisingly more wind noise with the top up than one would expect, and the Meridian audio system did not sound nearly as good as the one in the Range Rover. The best solution to those problems is lowering the top and pressing the active exhaust system button.

In alfresco cruising wind buffing is kept to a minimum, with only a slight breeze over the top of the driver’s head. The heater vents are positioned so that hot air blows directly over the 2/3 and 9/10 hand positions on the steering wheel, which itself is heated. The top setting for the heated seats is akin to sitting on hot lava rocks, which makes me believe this car could be fun with the top down over three seasons.

2014 Jaguar F-type convertible front left top

The 2015 Jaguar F-Type convertible starts at $69,000. The more powerful F-Type S, such as the one pictured here starts at $81,000. The test vehicle was splashed in $1500 British Racing Green paint, stanced with 20” $1500 Tornado wheels, outfitted with a $2000 Premium Pack 2, $2400 Vision Pack 2, $3400 Performance Package, heated seats and steering wheel for $600, Meridian audio for $1200, Ivory headliner (not made of real ivory) $500, HD and Sirius radio $450, and extended leather package for $1925. The total price of the test car, with delivery, came to $97,400. Those wanting more power can opt for the $92,000 F-Type V8 S. All trims are available in a coupe version for about $4000 less each. Additionally, the coupe is available in the even more powerful $99,000 550hp F-Type R trim.

Currently there are surprisingly many premium sports cars and roadsters on the market. Their abilities surpass those of supercars of only few years ago and are only limited by the driver’s skills, and even that is vastly supplemented by modern electronics. The question of which to buy is no longer answered by buff-book performance numbers, but rather by finding one that best matches your desires – there are no bad choices.

2014 Jaguar F-type convertible vaz 2303 23033 lada

Kamil Kaluski is the East Coast Editor for Hooniverse.com. His ramblings on Eastern European cars, $500 racers, and other miscellaneous automotive stuff can be found there. 

Jaguar Land Rover North America, LLC provided the vehicle for this review.

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38 Comments on “Capsule Review: 2014 Jaguar F-Type V6S Convertible...”


  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    TELL US ABOUT THE LADA.

    This car is absolutely gorgeous (love that color too), but $97,400 is ridic-balls. That’s big Jag V12 touring XJS coupe [modern equivalent] type money, and this doesn’t fit the bill. Isn’t the SL a better car? Doesn’t it project a sexy image too? Won’t you get way more of your money back when you go to dump it?

    I’d have the SL. And this has the same wheels as my car, just a bit “deeper.”

  • avatar
    Detroit-Iron

    Having driven a fair number of Porches in that price range I have to ask, in your professional opinion is the Jag (baby!) worth it? They are much better looking, but the downsides are legion and well known.

    • 0 avatar

      Worth it? Well, they’re all expensive, and I wouldn’t spend that much of my own money on either.

      I really depends on the person. The Porsches definitely feel more sporty and would therefore be my pick, but most buyers wouldn’t auto-cross these cars or take them anywhere near a track, something I do a few times per year. The Jag feels more grown up, likely to be purchased based only on its looks, and probably by a slightly older crowd.

  • avatar
    Arthur Dailey

    Hammond and Clarkson already completed the ultimate scientific survey on whether or not automobiles work as ‘babe magnets’.

    When comparing the allure of a super car to that of a puppy, the puppy won every time.

    Ergo, if you are trying to attract women, spend your time and money on a puppy, not a car.

    As for the ‘F’ type, beautiful.

    Regarding the Lada/124, it may be one of the derivatives manufactured in India or other 2nd/3rd world nations, probably ‘under license’ until approximately 3 years ago.

    • 0 avatar

      Nope, none of those, and not a Fiat. Lada 2107 is still produced in Egypt! Which is quite amazing.

      I’m married, with kids, I don’t have the time or the money for babes… but still, not one!!!

    • 0 avatar
      bomberpete

      “Not one woman even looked at me. Not even my wife. Nada. Zilch. Zero. Point. Zero. Now I’m no Jack Baruth, I got zero game, but c’mon, I did not even get a gander from the ladies.”

      I think you answered your own question there. Puppies work with the ladies. So do kids. As the 51-year-old father of a toddler, I’ve got more game now than ever because they respond to my interaction with her.

      Take the word of experience. Get a car like this because you want to drive it, look at it, feel its leather and controls, polish it and hang out with other sports car guys.

      • 0 avatar
        koshchei

        My Chrysler minivan attracts really old people. It’s utterly bizarre. They stop me in parking lots to comment on it, and I’ve even had them orbiting the van in my driveway like geriatric moths. This is the only vehicle I’ve ever had that attracts this much attention. Any attention, actually.

        The point of the anecdote? Go with the puppy instead. Otherwise, you could be swarmed by shambling blue-haired zombies in floral print sweatsuits and Tilley hats rather than gorgeous nymphomaniac swimsuit models.

      • 0 avatar
        JMII

        My wife is in LOVE with F-Type. Of course she also watches Top Gear and drives a car with a manual transmission so she is not “average”.

    • 0 avatar
      Fred

      My brother met a lot of ladies driving around his wife’s new CUE. They were really interested in it.

  • avatar
    slow_poke

    Lotus Evora costs less…. not convertible, but wow, rather have that. and “active exhaust…” that and 90db limits at race tracks make me very very sad…

    • 0 avatar

      I drove an Evora. No. Not at all. It felt like a kit car. No. Just no.

    • 0 avatar
      ellomdian

      While the Evora is more than competent as a driving car, spend 5 mins in one in traffic. Noisy, touch surfaces are awful, and if they are brand new, it smells like adhesive instead of leather.

      It’s like all of the old R&T articles comparing an Evo to (*Insert Supercar here*); yes, the Evo might spank the Lambo in a race, but then you have to drive home in it…

  • avatar
    Mandalorian

    Good car, but it’s about $20k too expensive. Jag would be better off trying to compete with the Boxter than the 911 with this one.

  • avatar
    Madroc

    Purely academic, but for the money I’d rather have an XK. Gain a V8, a luggage shelf/kids-in-a-pinch backseat, and more of a true GT form factor in a car that is still dead sexy all these years later. Otherwise, I’d spend the coin on more of a true sports car.

    Jag is clearly shooting here for the SL end of the market and not the Boxster/Corvette/Z4 side of things. Will be interesting to see how sales look a few years out. There *is* less competition for the SL so maybe it will work.

  • avatar
    S2k Chris

    It’s to the point where I could take any of the Jag F, Boxster, or Corvette and not be disappointed with any of them. With my own money it’s probably the Corvette (due to price) but there are no bad answers there.

    The only bad thing is “The car drove nice on the twisty and hilly…” It’s niceLY! (Dr. Evil finger) It’s an adverb.

  • avatar
    probert

    That’s not racing green. Nice looking car but too much goopy icing – strip it down – try to get the weight under 2 tons- include a subscription to Wine Taster International if the clientele wants to feel classy.

  • avatar
    jellybean

    Now I know where the new Miata got it’s tail lights.

  • avatar
    hachee

    Well, it seems all cars now are about “$20K too expensive”, because of all the stuff they have and what everyone thinks they need now. (I never had a car with nav, never thought I’d need it, now I have it, and I like it!)

    This car, and the coupe especially, look even better in the flesh than they do in pictures. I saw a coupe the other day, and I thought it was stunning. I wish we can get some smaller wheels and higher profile tires on cars again! I miss the fat tire look on sports and supercars.

  • avatar
    itsfred

    It’s interesting to me that two of the previous commenters said they’d prefer an SL to this Jag, because I traded this same model and spec car after 4 months of ownership for an SL550. Previously, just for context, I’ve also owned a 997-generation Carrera as well as a Boxster S.

    To me the Jaguar APPEARS to be a competitor for an SL or a Carrera but it’s really a different beast. In spite of the nice leather and luxury touches it seems to me pretty much a muscle/hooligan car. Like an old Detroit model it steers very light and it handles very heavy. It always wants to remind you how responsive and powerful it is by spooling the supercharger and downshifting 2 gears as soon as you touch the throttle. As if Jaguar is telling the new generation of buyers…hey we can make SPORTS cars too!

    My SL is pretty much the complete opposite – a car that does EVERYTHING with amazing precision and power but never makes a fuss (nor does it attract many second glances). And the new 911’s that I’ve driven are just so much more grown up and subtle than this Jaguar.

    The Jag will appeal to many, no doubt – it’s really sexy and high-tech –
    but for me it was just a fling that grew old fast. I expect to keep the SL for awhile – I suppose until the warranty runs out :-)

  • avatar
    facelvega

    A Turkish gangster I knew in Berlin once told me that the best car he ever had was a 2CV, much better than his Porsche, and the reason he gave was simple: girls liked it. Seems obvious when you think on it.

    Reading through the comments here, one thing seems clear: comment writers here are more interested in reviews of classic cars (or I imagine even 10 year old beaters) than in lukewarm reviews of the same new cars every glossy mag has already reviewed. Now, if a writer here absolutely disagrees with all those reviews, then for me that would be worth reading.

  • avatar
    racerxlilbro

    I think these cars are absolutely gorgeous. And, when I’m done schlepping my three kids around in a couple of years, I will look for one as a CPO. My prediction? In three years, this car with all the goodies will be available with low miles as lease turn-ins for about $45k.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      I agree they should be about 50% in three years 70-75% in five assuming it follows the resale patterns of Jaguars before it. However this could become an oddball car given its roadster/convertible characteristics and hold value better than expected.

  • avatar
    seanx37

    $98k? I would rather have Corvette. And an Accord V6 to drive on the rainy days.
    But they are lovely cars. Probably a great used car deal in about 2 yrs.

  • avatar
    dal20402

    If you attract women with an expensive car, they are the wrong women and you will soon regret attracting them.

  • avatar
    3Deuce27

    Alfa _ Corvette _ Cayman/Boxster _ F-Type… All great choices.

    Like the last few generations of XK’s, I would choose the coupe, and the same goes for the others. The Boxster only if a factory hardtop is available.

    I do a lot of long distance cross country travel on back roads, sometimes at very high speeds, and at times, have a lady passenger. Few women like wind in their hair, motoring at legal speeds let alone at elevated speeds.

    The coupe provides better foundation for the suspension, so handles better, more precisely. It is also quieter for conversation or music. And then the security the hard roof provides when away from home parked in a public lot/garage gives some piece of mind. But the final feature that sways me to coupes is, they generally just look better, sometimes, much better. And I will always have an MX5 for top down jaunts down country roads when it is sunny.

    And… My little Miata gets lot of attention from women, young and older. Can’t figure why the Jag didn’t attract them like bees to honey.

  • avatar
    genuineleather

    Beautiful car, but I still think Jaguar overshot the mark on price. $70k is a lot of money for a small two-seater, to say nothing of the eye-watering $98k as-tested. Jaguar needs volume, and it needs customers to SEE that it’s a live and kicking. To that end, I would’ve done anything necessary to get the starting price below $50k: manual seats and softtop, vinyl seats, ecoboost 4. That kind of price would move the metal in a meaningful way, snag the youngers buyers Jag doesn’t have, and actually compete with the SLK/Z4/Boxter.

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