Family motorists have for years been faced with a series of dilemmas.
On the one hand there are dads craving the image, style and performance of the coolest sports cars.
Mum, though, needs the space, economy, comfort and raised driving position of what has become known as the crossover.
A question of take your pick? Er, well no actually, you can have both – in the lean, mean shape of the new Jaguar F-PACE.
When it arrives early next year the versatile ‘performance crossover’ will cost from £34,170 and come with a choice of petrol or diesel engines and five trim grades.
Designed by the big cat’s style guru Ian Callum and inspired by the F-TYPE coupe, the F-PACE really looks the part with its muscular bonnet, powerful rear haunches, distinctive tail light graphics and forged alloy wheels.
A Jaguar priority has been to build a five-door SUV that will cossett five passengers in upmarket comfort and the prestige brand claims class-leading rear knee-room plus a cavernous luggage compartment – 650 litres to be precise.
It also brings luxuries like heated, electrically-reclining rear seats plus techno treats including the InControl Touch Pro infotainment system and 12.3-inch HD virtual instrument cluster.
Power comes via an efficient new 180PS 2.0-litre Ingenium diesel – sure top prove a popular choice – in either rear or all-wheel drive, a 300PS 3.0-litre V6 diesel automatic with AWD and the 380PS supercharged 3.0 petrol V6 auto with AWD that’s used in the F-TYPE.
Owners can expect figures of 0-60 in 8.5 seconds and a 130mph top speed from the 2.0-litre diesel with an official average fuel return of 57.7mpg. Emissions are 129g/km.
Economy remains reasonable at 47.1mpg in the swifter (0-60 in 5.8 secs) 3.0 diesel though the figure for the 155mph supercharged petrol model is down at 31.7.
The new Jaguar also heralds the world debut of Activity Key – a waterproof, wearable technology which allows the keys to be locked inside the vehicle.
There’s also All-Surface Progress Control to enable smooth driveaway on low friction surfaces along with a full suite of the latest occupant and pedestrian safety systems.
F-PACE vehicle line director Kevin Stride said: “The all-new F-PACE is a Jaguar that customers around the world demanded that we make. The targets we set are among the most challenging we’ve ever had to deliver but I’m proud to say that the all-new F-PACE meets or exceeds every one of them.
“This is a performance crossover with outstanding dynamics yet also delivers a smooth, quiet ride.
“Together with our all-new infotainment system, our most advanced all-wheel drive system and an outstanding range of active safety technologies, the all-new F-PACE makes every journey a better, more rewarding experience.”
Prices range from £34,170 for the 2.0-litre diesel in entry grade Prestige trim rising to £51,450 for S grade 3.0-litre models.
There’s also a special model called the First Edition, priced at £65,275, and restricted to 200 cars in the UK.
Powered exclusively by the 300PS 3.0-litre V6 diesel engine, it gets a unique metallic paint job called Caesium Blue – a reference to the C-X17 concept unveiled at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show.
It’s also loaded with extra gear like 22-inch alloys, red brake calipers, body kit, adaptive dynamics and houndstooth embossed Windsor leather sports seats.