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Jaguar coupe can outstyle convertible

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The 2015 Jaguar F-type R coupe is as gorgeous as it is fast. (Jaguar/TNS)

In the world of sports cars, convertibles are for show, coupes are for go, and the 2015 Jaguar F-type R coupe goes like a scalded cat.

The stunning two-seater claims a 4-second 0-60 mph time and a top speed of 186.

The F-type coupe is new for 2015. It’s the hardtop version of the F-type convertible that debuted last year. The F-type coupe is gorgeous, even better looking than the ragtop.

It’s a truism among car designers that coupes are often better looking than convertibles. That’s never been truer than of the Jaguar F-type.

A coupe’s closed top allows designers to complete the shape. Convertibles can appear unfinished. The closed body of a coupe tends to be stiffer. That lends itself to sportier handling.

Convertibles compensate for that by being romantic and delightful, but the F-type coupe’s looks just might be lovely enough to outweigh the pleasure of driving with the wind in your hair.

Prices for the F-type coupe start at $65,000 for a base model with a 340-horsepower supercharged 3.0L V-6. All F-types have an eight-speed automatic transmission. Power increases to 380 horsepower in the $77,000 S model and $99,000 in the blistering R, which has a 550-horsepower supercharged 5.0L V-8.

The nicely equipped F-type R coupe tester had 20-inch black aluminum wheels, a glass roof, front and rear parking sensors and blind spot alert. It stickered at $104,950.

Hold the sticker shock. With the exception of the 650-horsepower Corvette ZO6’s low $78,000 base price, the F-type R coupe is a bit of a bargain among super coupes. It costs thousands, in some cases tens of thousands, of dollars less than comparably equipped competitors.

The F-type R’s acceleration devours traffic and miles. An adjustable exhaust note lets the driver choose an unobtrusive or exciting engine note. The transmission responds quickly to manual paddle shifts and is smooth when left to its own devices.

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