Despite its hard-bodied appearance and high-performance acumen, the 2021 Jaguar F-type is arguably one of the most underappreciated sports cars. While its menacing new face may polarize some, the two-seater still has undeniably attractive proportions. Available as a coupe or convertible, the F-type encompasses its passengers with a snug cabin and enthralls its driver with snarling supercharged engines. Of course, there’s also a four-cylinder version that reduces the cost of entry. Regardless of powerplant, this Jag is at its best on twisting roads where its agility and composure shine.
What’s New for 2021?
2021 F-type receives a significant makeover that includes an edgier new look and numerous other enhancements. Its powertrain roster is reshuffled rather than updated. It now only offers a 380-hp supercharged V-6 and a 575-hp supercharged V-8. The base 296-hp turbocharged four-cylinder continues as the entry-level engine. Interior updates include a new fully digital gauge cluster and an updated infotainment system. The top-of-the-line F-type SVR has been discontinued.
Engine, Transmission, and Performance
Jaguar has simplified the powertrain roster on 2021 F-type compared with the previous model year. All engines still pair with an eight-speed automatic transmission, and both the V-6 and V-8 models have standard all-wheel-drives to help better put their power to the pavement. A 296-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder remains the base engine and only comes with a rear-wheel drive. A 380-hp supercharged 3.0-liter V-6 is the middle child, while a supercharged 5.0-liter V-8 sits at the top of the horsepower food chain. This “R” model now makes 575 ponies and 516 lb-ft of torque, which equals the output of the outgoing SVR model. The version we tested roared to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds and completed the quarter-mile in 11.7 seconds at 121 mph. Along with newly available carbon-ceramic brakes, the 2021 F-type also has revised suspension components. Behind the wheel, the updates were hard to notice, but the coupe delivered a civilized ride and the steering was talkative albeit overly touchy.
Fuel Economy and Real-World MPG
The 2021 F-type comes with a turbocharged four-cylinder and rear-wheel drive as well as a supercharged V-6 and V-8 that both pair with all-wheel drive. The four-cylinder version is the most fuel-efficient option, although the EPA hasn’t released ratings yet. The V-6 coupe and convertible have government estimates of 19 mpg city and 27 highway. The V-8 coupe and convertible drop those figures to 16/24 mpg city/highway. We tested a V-8 coupe on our 200-mile fuel-economy route and it exceeded its highway estimate by 3 mpg with 27 total.
Interior, Comfort, and Cargo
Inside, 2021 F-type maintains a driver-centric design that’s accentuated with a mix of racy and rich materials. These include stitched surfaces, faux-suede accents, and chrome trim. Fancier models will offer even better interior appointments that include aluminum pieces, embossing, and more faux-suede coverings. Two differently styled seats are available and can be upgraded with heated and cooled surfaces. The F-type’s excellent driving position carries over as well, and the driver will now face a large 12.3-inch fully digital gauge cluster. Unfortunately, the coupe and convertible’s notoriously tight cabin and the convertible’s hilariously small trunk will also remain.