While all Ingenium 2.0-liter gas fours share major architecture – the aluminum block and heads, as well as the bore and stroke – there are some internal differences. The most important are the low-compression pistons, which allow for more boost without detonation. The new compression ratio is 9.5:1, compared to the 10.5:1 ratio in the 247-hp spec engines.
To make the most out of more boost, you need new plumbing and a way to get more fuel into the combustion chamber. So Jaguar fitted a larger twin-scroll turbocharger that's unique to this application. It features low-friction ceramic ball bearings – Jaguar says this improves transient response. There are also new fuel injectors and a fuel pump to accommodate the increased demand for gas in the high-output engine. On the back end, there's a unique exhaust system with active flaps to give it a louder bark when called for.
Of course, some new hardware and more boost means the various electronic systems that control the engine needed changes. For one, Jaguar's changed the cam timing and valve lift mapping, as well as the ignition timing. The throttle mapping and transmission calibration have also been optimized for the new engine.
As far as the driver's concerned, the biggest change from the 247-hp engine to the 296-hp one – other than increased scoot – will be where the power peak is. The 296-hp engine makes peak power at a higher point in the rev range, which should reward drivers who generously prod the throttle and hold gears in manual mode. Remember, F-Types equipped with this engine will only be available with an automatic transmission.
You should also remember that it's an excellent gearbox overall, with rapid, smooth shift characteristics, if the other 8-speed Jaguars are anything to go by. However, this particular unit is slightly smaller and lighter than the one found in the V6 and V8 models. Jaguar wouldn't get into specifics about why this is, but a guess is that the company shaved some ounces off by only making it as strong as it needs to be. More metal equals more weight, so there's no sense fitting a heavier gearbox rated for much greater torque. Likewise, the particular weight savings from downsizing the auto wasn't revealed.
To get it all to fit under the hood, Jaguar had to create a variety of new parts. The engine mounts, auxiliary fuel pump, fuel lines, brake lines, a unique engine cover, splash shields, a new transmission tunnel liner, HVAC unit, and fuel tank were all created specifically for this variant. The oil sump is also unique to this application. However, the company didn't need to alter the chassis structure at all to accommodate the Ingenium engine – that is to say that the body shell is the same as in other-engined variants.
All-in-all, it's a pretty standard gamut of alterations required to fit it into the F-Type, and the sort of things you'd expect for a hotted-up engine variant. The real question is how it's going to drive, and we won't find that out until later this year. Jaguar has thus far made all its F-Types growl with menace, so it'll be interesting to see how the inline-four sounds in the roadster and coupe. There are hints in the video embedded above, but stay tuned for in-person impressions in a few months.