Snow way Jaguar is taking chances on new F-Pace
JAGUAR has been putting one of its most anticipated new products through its extreme climate testing.
The new F-Pace crossover is due for public debut in September and while for many owners of the new vehicle the closest they will ever get to a monsoon is their local car wash, the company has a reputation to maintain and has put the new vehicle through some severe tests.
From the searing heat and dust of Dubai to the ice and snow of Northern Sweden, Jaguar has been keen to ensure the new F-Pace is every bit as reliable in extreme conditions as anything produced by its stable mate, Land Rover.
Jaguar said it was vital every system functioned perfectly even under the most extreme conditions, there the new vehicle had been subjected to one of the most demanding test programmes ever devised by the company.
Andrew Whyman, Vehicle Programme Director, Jaguar F-Pace, said: “We developed the F-Pace to offer the ride, handling and refinement demanded from a Jaguar, together with exceptional levels of ability and composure on all surfaces and in all weathers.
“Just as we paid obsessive attention to detail over the engineering of every single component, we’ve exhaustively tested the F-Pace in the most challenging conditions to ensure that it will exceed the expectations of our customers around the world.”
At Jaguar Land Rover’s test facility in Arjeplog, Northern Sweden, average winter temperatures rarely exceed -15°C and often plummet to -40°C. The 60km of purpose-built handling tracks, mountain climbs, inclines, split-friction straights and off-road areas are considered ideal for optimising the calibration of the all-wheel drive system, Dynamic Stability Control and technologies such as Jaguar’s revolutionary All-Surface Progress Control. The work done here makes sure that, whether on asphalt, snow or ice, the F-Pace delivers the connected steering feel and agility fundamental to Jaguar’s heritage.
In Dubai, ambient temperatures can exceed 50°C in the shade. When vehicles are left out in direct sunlight, cabin temperatures can soar to 70°C – exactly what’s needed to ensure that everything from climate control systems to infotainment touchscreens function perfectly in extremes of heat and humidity.
While the test engineers can relax in air-conditioned comfort as they drive in city traffic, this part of the test cycle is designed to place the cooling systems under very high load through a combination of high ambient temperatures and low airflow.
The F-Pace, a prototype version of which was used as one of the support vehicles for the Team Sky cycling team during the first stage of the recent Tour de France, has also been driven over gravelled mountain passes.
This is the first time that a Jaguar test programme has included this uniquely challenging environment, and the company believes it is this attention to detail that will help to make Jaguar’s first performance crossover the benchmark in its segment.