The sound of raindrops on a convertible’s cloth top doesn’t usually bother me. It’s just the reality of summertime driving here in the Midwest. But it’s under my skin now, because the rain is coming down fast, and it sounds like a drum kit with a double kick. Worse still, I’m stuck in traffic on Chicago’s Eisenhower Expressway in a 2014 Jaguar F-Type S convertible.
The 2014 Jaguar F-Type is doing its best to curb my foul mood; its ivory, leather seats are unbelievably comfortable, its cabin’s bronze-and-aluminum color scheme looks lovely, and every Wild Belle song coming through its 10-speaker Meridian audio system sounds better than live. None of this matters to the egoist in me, who needs to be seen driving one of the most beautiful convertibles around.
Great, the windows are foggy. There’s no chance anyone will see me now. A space in the lane next to me opens up, and I waste no time speeding past small clusters of gridlocked cars, the Jag’s traction-control light blinking as I do. I turn off of the highway and onto lower Wacker Drive, a grid of streets that magically sit below street level. The busy roads above provide weather cover, so I creep up to a stoplight, pull a tab to drop the F-Type’s top, which goes down almost silently, and wait for green.
With the car’s active sport exhaust set to the open position (it’s a $220 option, by the way), I mat the accelerator when the light turns. The F-Type’s supercharged V-6 engine really barks and it gets attention. At full throttle, the Jaguar V6 buzzes in a metallic way, only in a good way, like a man blowing a beat-up jazz trumpet as hard as he can.
As I accelerate along lower Wacker, the 2014 Jaguar F-Type backfiring with every shift, people stare and take pictures. If I were in a Chevrolet Corvette Stingray convertible or Porsche 911 cabriolet, the sound of raindrops on a cloth top wouldn’t bother me. In a 2014 Jaguar F-Type convertible, though, the egoist takes the wheel, and he’ll figure out any way to drop the top and be seen. I like the way he thinks.