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Used test: Jaguar F-Pace vs Porsche Macan
These two fast and practical SUVs from Jaguar and Porsche can be had much cheaper bought used, but which one makes the most sense? We have the answer...
Jaguar F-Pace 2.0T 300 R-Sport
- List price when new £48,530
- Price today £37,200*
- Available from 2016-present
It’s cheaper to buy than a used Macan, but you get more space, power and kit for your money.
Porsche Macan 2.0T
- List price when new £46,344
- Price today £38,100*
- Available from 2019-present
The pukka Macan is the benchmark when it comes to SUV handling.
*Price today is based on a 2019 model with average mileage and full service history, correct at time of writing
Prior to the Porsche Macan, SUVs could be big, fast, practical and luxurious but none of them were so good to drive that an enthusiastic driver might be tempted to buy one just for the sake of it. The Macan was the first SUV to show the world that such cars could handle well and be fun to drive. With a 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine under the bonnet it even looked relatively affordable.
Not surprisingly, other manufacturers soon cottoned on to the idea of a fine-handling SUV, and in the last few years there have been many contenders vying for its crown. One such is the Jaguar F-Pace, which when specified with a similar 2.0-litre engine is larger, more powerful and better equipped.
Furthermore, bought at just over a year old, as we’re testing them here, you can buy a range-topping version of the F-Pace for less than the price of an entry-level Macan. So is that premium Porsche badge enough to justify the extra, and is the Macan still the king of the sports SUVs on the road? Read on to find out.
What are they like to drive?
While both cars are four-wheel drive, the F-Pace should in theory be significantly quicker than the Macan. It not only packs 296bhp to the Macan’s 241bhp but also weighs less. In our tests, however, both covered the 0-60mph sprint in 6.4sec, largely due to the fact that the Macan’s seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox is in a different league from the F-Pace’s conventional eight-speed auto. Not only does it allow you to engage launch control for optimum getaways, but it also rifles through the gears without any interruption in acceleration.
Left in a high gear, both engines pull strongly from around 1500rpm, allowing for relatively effortless give-and-take motoring. In most situations, you’d be hard pressed to separate the two – until you get to a corner, at least.
Up to a brisk pace, the F-Pace actually feels highly accomplished. Its steering weights up in an ideal way as you turn the wheel, helping you to judge exactly how much grip the front tyres have, and body lean is well contained. But the Macan has the upper hand when you push harder, with a keener front end and better body control.
The F-Pace is notably quicker to run wide of your intended line and its intrusive stability control system errs towards quashing any attempts at having fun, whereas the Macan just wants you to go quicker and explore its limits.
But no one drives around with their hair on fire all the time, of course, so it’s even more impressive that the Macan can play the comfort card just as convincingly. Indeed, if you can find one with the optional air suspension fitted, the Macan not only rides more comfortably than the F-Pace but also isolates you better from engine, wind and road noise.
While the F-Pace has a firm ride even on its standard 19in wheels, the 22in wheels that were fitted to our test car only make matters worse; the ride is unsettled both around town and on the motorway.
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