Backing up the supermodel looks of the F-Type is performance hardware that runs the gamut from a 300-hp four-cylinder to a honking V8 with 575 angry ponies chomping at the bit. Regardless of cylinder count, the F-Type delivers a driving experience that's as visceral and engaging as a round of bullfighting.
Acting as price-leader is the 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that's packing 296 hp and 295 pound-feet of torque. This is the first time that Jaguar has built a sports car with less than six cylinders, so, naturally, we harbored a bit of trepidation concerning this bite-sized powerplant. Luckily, our concerns were mostly unwarranted. Of particular note was the impressive amount of torque, which helped push the F-Type to 60 mph in just 5.4 seconds – a figure comparable to the base 340-hp V6 that had heretofore been the entry-level source of motivation. Credit for this gusto can also be attributable to the featherweight nature of the four-pot. It measures in at 115 pounds lighter than the six-cylinder variant, and, as anyone who has shed some pounds will attest, this kind of weight loss isn't insignificant. All told, a four-cylinder F-Type gives up surprisingly little to its extra-cylinder brethren.
The supercharged V6 is available in three levels of performance, ranging from 340 to 400 hp. The V6 is the only way to get a genuine six-speed manual; all other engines are solely offered with an eight-speed automatic transmission. The 340- and 380-hp versions of the blown V6 have been around since the F-Type first hit the scene, so we're familiar with their overall excellence. The 400-hp 400 Sport model, though, is a new, one-year-only special that wrings out another 20 horses. With just the almost-negligible power increase and little else to differentiate it, the here-and-gone 400 Sport should make for an interesting Barrett-Jackson featured listing 30 years from now.
The V8 cars enter 2018 just as raw and untamed as they were before. The 575-hp SVR in particular is a punishing, best-for-the-track kind of car, and is the only F-Type that should be avoided if you're trying to daily-drive one of these pretty kitties. Otherwise, your back will be thrown out in a week thanks to that stiff and unforgiving suspension. Luckily, all other F-Types ride and handle superbly, striking a nice balance between sports-car and boulevardier.