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In-depth reviews

Jaguar E-Pace SUV - Interior & comfort

The Jaguar E-Pace has a luxurious, smart, and comfortable interior, but its infotainment system is the weak link

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Interior & comfort Rating

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​Jaguar has adopted some of the styling elements of its F-Type sports car for the E-Pace, evidenced when you look at the design of the interior. The grab handle and sloping dash, for instance, make the interior sportier than the bigger F-Pace SUV. Double stitched leather on mid-range models and above give the cabin the upmarket feel you’d expect in a Jaguar, even if there is the odd slab of underwhelming black plastic, and some will find the BMW X2 dashboard more interesting to look at.

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The quality of the ride you get with an E-Pace can feel a little jittery and it certainly isn't as compliant as the most comfortable cars in this class. Thumps and jolts increase in frequency  as you go up in wheel sizes, so it's little surprise that in order to have the optional 21-inch wheels, Jaguar insists you also have to select the optional adaptive dampers. The ride is more compliant than rivals such as the Jeep Compass, but prospective buyers may be surprised to read the E-Pace feels less fluid and refined than a number of the competition, including the Volkswagen Tiguan.

The engines available in the E-Pace are refined, however, and aside from the occasionally fidgety ride, the car never feels unrefined; the only other thing you’re likely to notice is the wind rushing past the wing mirrors at high speed and tyre roar from the bigger wheels.

Jaguar E-Pace dashboard

The dashboard features a simple layout, with rotary dials used to control many of the car’s systems, while a digital instrument cluster replaces traditional dials behind the steering wheel. For 2021, Jaguar swapped out the old infotainment setup with its latest Pivi Pro system, which helped the car keep up with rivals.

Equipment

The E-Pace trim range used to consist of two main pillars: regular and R-Dynamic. Each pillar contained the same four trim levels: standard, S, SE, and HSE but the R-Dynamic versions have body-coloured door cladding, a different front bumper design, front fog lights and different trim pieces, for a sportier look. For mid-2022 this appears to have been simplified again, with just R-Dynamic, R-Dynamic Black and Sport versions available.

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The entry-level E-Pace comes with 17-inch alloy wheels, LED headlights, dual-zone climate control, front and rear parking sensors and a 360-degree camera, plus a heated windscreen and door mirrors. It’s also equipped with an 11.1-inch touchscreen Pivi Pro infotainment system. This is a massive upgrade, with crisp graphics, much more friendly menus and snappy responses. It can also be updated over-the-air, which should cut down on some visits to the dealership.

Move up to the S trim and you get 18-inch alloy wheels, electric folding door mirrors with puddle lights, electric adjustment for the front seats and leather upholstery.

The SE model gets extras such as 19-inch wheels, a powered tailgate and extra safety features, while the range-topping HSE features 20-inch alloy wheels, 16-way adjustment on the electric front seats, upgraded Windsor leather upholstery, a Meridian sound system and keyless entry for added convenience.

When the R-Dynamic version of each trim is chosen, the E-Pace gets a more sporting look inside and out, with trim-specific alloy wheels and sports seats.

At the top of the range, the R-Dynamic Black Edition trim adds several styling upgrades, with satin grey 19-inch alloys, red painted brake callipers and a panoramic sunroof. It also has contrasting gloss black air intakes, grille surround and door mirror caps.

Options

Optional equipment for the interior includes an infrared reflective windscreen to keep the car cooler in hot weather, ambient interior lighting, an air quality sensor, a digital TV and a detachable tow bar.

Offered as part of the Technology Pack, the E-Pace can be fitted with a ClearSight rear-view mirror, which uses a camera to replicate a traditional mirror when the boot is loaded to the ceiling, you have a car full of passengers, or even if the windows are covered in mud. The Pack also includes wireless smartphone charging and a head-up display.

External optional equipment includes larger alloy wheels, a black contrast or panoramic roof, tinted windows and Matrix LED headlights.

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Andy is Carbuyer's managing editor, with more than a decade of experience helping consumers find their perfect car. He has an MA in automotive journalism and has tested hundreds of vehicles.

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