The Importance of the Jaguar F-PACE’s Design

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Jaguar is an 80-year-old company that’s never made a crossover until this year. Given that fact, you could say the new F-PACE is a turning point for the brand.

Ian Callum, the director of design for Jaguar, feels that way about the five-seater’s styling. In fact, he calls it the “fulcrum of a whole new era.”

Perhaps it’s because the F-PACE challenged Callum and his team to make a practical, spacious design exciting. I’d certainly associate the word “exciting” with Jaguar instead of “practical.” However, the F-PACE’s interior room and storage areas are intended to make it more of the latter.

While the F-PACE is a curvaceous and attractive vehicle from different angles and in profile, I wouldn’t call it exciting. The front end is familiar if you’ve ever seen a picture of the XE or the XF in person. On the other hand, the tail lights bring to mind the F-TYPE, a Jaguar which is quite a thrill. (My review of that is coming soon.)

We’ll have to wait see if the whole new era the F-PACE launches is one in which Jaguar design is strong enough to win over potential buyers of BMWs, Mercedes-Benzes, and Audis.

Chime in with your thoughts on the forum. >>

Derek Shiekhi's father raised him on cars. As a boy, Derek accompanied his dad as he bought classics such as post-WWII GM trucks and early Ford Mustang convertibles.

After loving cars for years and getting a bachelor's degree in Business Management from Texas State University, Derek decided to get an associate degree in journalism from Austin Community College as well. His networking put him in contact with the editor of the Austin-American Statesman newspaper, who hired him to write freelance about automotive culture and events in Austin, Texas in 2013. One particular story led to him getting a certificate for learning the foundations of road racing.

While watching TV with his parents one fateful evening, he saw a commercial that changed his life. In it, Jeep touted the Wrangler as the Texas Auto Writers Association's "SUV of Texas." Derek knew he had to join the organization if he was going to advance as an automotive writer. He joined the Texas Auto Writers Association (TAWA) in 2014 and was fortunate to meet several nice people who connected him to the representatives of several automakers and the people who could give him access to press vehicles (the first one he ever got the keys to was a Lexus LX 570). He's now a regular at TAWA's two main events: the Texas Auto Roundup in the spring and the Texas Truck Rodeo in the fall.

Over the past several years, Derek has learned how to drive off-road in various four-wheel-drive SUVs (he even camped out for two nights in a Land Rover), and driven around various tracks in hot hatches, muscle cars, and exotics. Several of his pieces, including his article about the 2015 Ford F-150 being crowned TAWA's 2014 "Truck of Texas" and his review of the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider, have won awards in TAWA's annual Excellence in Craft Competition. Last year, his profile of Wagonmaster, a business that restores Jeep Wagoneers, won prizes in TAWA’s signature writing contest and its pickup- and SUV-focused Texas Truck Invitational.

In addition to writing for a variety of Internet Brands sites, including and, Derek also contributes to other outlets. He started There Will Be Cars on Instagram and Facebook to get even more automotive content out to fellow enthusiasts.

Derek can be contacted at [email protected]

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