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Last we heard, the Jaguar F-Pace was slated to be launched in the fourth quarter of this year. Bang on time, Coventry’s first SUV has been spotted on the road in Malaysia, thanks to reader Desmond Lau.

The car seen here is in R Sport trim, gaining a sportier front bumper, gloss black window surrounds and roof rails as well as body-coloured lower inserts instead of black on the standard model. Also fitted is a Black Pack which adds gloss black accents on the grille, air intakes, fender vents and door cladding finishers, as well as 20-inch “Venom” five-split-spoke alloy wheels in black.

Spotted at the rear of the car is the 35t badge, meaning that it has a 3.0 litre supercharged petrol V6 from the F-Type sports car. As it is not the hot F-Pace S, it makes 340 PS at 6,500 rpm instead of 380 PS on the range-topping model; however, torque remains identical at 450 Nm at 4,500 rpm. Drive is sent to all four wheels via an eight-speed ZF automatic transmission.

It is unclear if other engines will be introduced alongside the supercharged engine – in other markets the F-Pace is offered with the 2.0 litre Ingenium four-cylinder turbodiesel and 3.0 litre V6 turbodiesel, but those are unlikely to be offered over here. Later on, Jaguar could introduce its new petrol Ingenium turbo engines, although that could still be a while away.

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The F-Pace is designed to compete with the Porsche Macan, as well as other compact exec SUVs such as the BMW X3, Mercedes-Benz GLC and Audi Q5. It is, however, significantly bigger than all its rivals; at 4,731 mm long, 1,936 mm wide and 1,652 mm tall – with a 2,874 mm wheelbase – it’s 50 mm longer than the Macan, 71 mm longer than the new Q5, 75 mm longer than the GLC and 79 mm longer than the X3.

Unlike the similarly-sized Land Rover Discovery Sport, the Jaguar uses the same aluminium-intensive architecture employed by its XE and XF sedan siblings, rather than the more rugged, predominantly steel D8 platform. So, it’s a road car, first and foremost.

Plenty of hardware from its stablemates, including an F-Type-style double wishbone front suspension (albeit adapted for off-road duty), the XE’s Integral Link rear suspension and the F-Type’s brake-applied Torque Vectoring. There’s also lots of off-road electronics from Land Rover, including Adaptive Surface Response (i.e. LR’s Terrain Response), All-Surface Progress Control and Low Friction Launch.

Options include the quad-core InControl Touch Pro infotainment system with a 10.2-inch touchscreen, an Audi-style 12.3-inch virtual instrument display, a choice of 380 W and 825 W Meridian sound systems and the Activity Key – the latter is a RFID wristband that can be used to lock the key safely in the car when you’re out running or swimming. It’s unclear whether these will be offered on Malaysian-spec cars, however.

Itching to know how the F-Pace drives? Read our review from Montenegro here.