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Fri 2 Jun 2017 05:22 PM

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Tested: The Jaguar F-type SVR

This is a great everyday supercar that will never fail to make you smile

Tested: The Jaguar F-type SVR
You could call the Jaguar F-type SVR a road jet, such is its speed and velocity.

Today’s supercars are a bit of an enigma to me. They have reached a level of performance that would have been unthinkable 20 years ago. Manufacturers have increased the capabilities of these vehicles without making them impossible to drive on the open road.

In 2017, anyone can drive out of a showroom with a 600bhp (brake horsepower) vehicle and still make it home alive. Technology, tyres, suspensions and electronics have made all this possible. But, there is a but.

Cars have lost their souls. Rather than being part of our heart and body, they are now an extension of a central processing unit. They are a politically correct boss who doesn’t want to allow you to take or enjoy any risks. The number of electronics has made the impossible possible.

A computer is today governing every single aspect of our cars, especially the new monsters, such as this Jaguar F-type SVR. The computer controls your throttle, brake distribution, traction, steering and stability, and it will always try to save your life if you make a mistake.

This SVR falls into the battle zone already filled by the Porsche GT3, the Audi R8 V10 and the Mercedes AMG GT. This territory is full of cars capable of reaching more than 300km/h and accelerating from 0 to 100km/h in less than four seconds. If you sit in this SVR, you can expect a lot. And, thankfully, I was given plenty. Perhaps most unexpectedly, I found excitement. I immediately felt the presence of the engineers who designed this beauty. They tried – and succeeded – in making a supercar for the incredibly wealthy, very average driver.

It’s pushed by a mighty 5 litre supercharged engine, capable of 322km/h, 575bhp and a whopping 700Nm (newton metre) of torque.

The combination of the size and of the supercharger makes this engine one of the sweetest I have come across. It delivers its power with a ferocity that is – amazingly - not intimidating. From the lower revolutions to the red zone, it is a continuous exciting rush, always at your disposal, roaring like a perfectly tamed lion, um, I mean jaguar.

I love the design, too. I like the outside proportions as well as the masculine additions to its aerodynamics that were specifically developed for this model. Inside, it’s a typical two seater, but with plenty of space. The finishing is very good, despite some less-impressive details borrowed from the Land Rover folks. (Jaguar and Land Rover are part of the same company). The controls are in all the right places and you can tell the engineers designed this car with the driver in mind.

It’s not easy to find long stretches of tarmac in the UAE capable of properly accommodating this road jet. It was outside the city when the car was driven hard, however, that I began to understand how the electronics of the vehicle could have intervened between driver and car and removed the soul from this beautiful beast.

As I suspected, this is a driver’s car. It communicates with you extremely well. The rear end has spunk and it feels the weight transfer when coming off the gas mid corner. It gives you plenty of feedback at the limit. You can tell the motherboard is doing its maths to keep you alive, but it still allows you to give your input and to control the car even if you are letting the leash out a little bit.

In the end, this is a great everyday supercar that will never fail to make you smile.

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