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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello All,

So I decided to pull the trigger on a Curt brand hitch for the new FPace S. It cost $145.00 on Amazon and I received it in 3 days. This is the 3rd Curt performed fla2" receiver hitch I've had with t he 2 prior ones that I mounted on my 2006 Infiniti FX35, and my recently turned in 2014 Infiniti. Each one performed flawlessly and I even used the first one to tow a small landscape trailer for odds and ends as well as used to go camping.

Last night, I decided to install the newest one on my FPace. It took over 4 hrs mainly because of the difficulty in removing the myriad of screws within each wheel well and behind the felt-like wheel well lining (no, I chose not to pull the rear wheels, however this would have helped). THEN I was VERY careful and took my sweet old time (Including closing eyes when pulling very hard to release the snap-fit clips/attaching points for the bumper surround (Yes, and in my case that's the Italian Racing Red painted rear panel covering the entire rear and back sides of my BRAND NEW CAR!) I was sweating bullets on that part,.whew. I'm happy to say that nothing got scratched, chipped, broken or otherwise screwed up.

Here are some pics from the dismantling of the rear bumper area and installation of the hitch, which ultimately, went off without a hitch (sorry, couldn't resist that).
I can say that I'm 100% happy with the fitment of this hitch, and I'll admit that although it's not the prettiest nor best hidden one available,...for $145.00 and 4 hours of my time, I expect that I'll have many years of happiness with it. For those not willing nor able to install one of these themselves, I know of someone that had an autobody shop do the install for $200.00,..so for around $350.00 total, it's just a bit over 3 times less costly than that hidden hitch if you don't do this yourself.

I also included a few pics of my Softride 2" receiver-mount 4-bike rack that I've had for 11 yrs and this the 3rd SUV now.
It's served me VERY well and is bullet-proof. I usually carry one to 2 bikes on it, but have had up to 4 on it at one
time and it's no problem. It tilts down so the rear of the car can be opened completely and there's a cable that slides
out to lock up the bikes.
Here's one available on Amazon for those interested:
https://www.amazon.com/Softride-Pre...1493777993&sr=8-1&keywords=softride+bike+rack

Enjoy the pics and all of the FPace's rear anatomy!

Jeff
 

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You are a brave man to pull off back panel on your own on your brand new car:). I know what you mean by swetting bullets when pulling panel apart and trying not to break or scratch anything. Whenever I do such stupid things myself I often wonder how much training mechanics at the dealerships get before they get assigned to work on cars and how many times they mess up that I am not aware of. I am pretty sure that is the main reason why customers at the dealerships are not allowed in the bay area, not the safety issue. One of the things I change on all my cars and friends cars are break pads and rotors. Many, many years ago when I first did it I thought - now that I know how to next car should be piece of cake.... NOT! Every freakin' car has something just slightly different that every new car and even new model is repeated learning experience.

Anyway - congrats on your work! Looks good!
 

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I'll be doing this very soon. Once you pull all the tabs, screws, etc, you pull the bumper cover from the edges by the wheel well right? I've done it on other vehicles and remember the pop sounds it makes when you pull give you a mini heart attack. I had a Jeep dealership damage my front bumper cover when they pulled it without removing all the screws. So I'm definitively doing this myself.

Looks real nice by the way. I have a Thule 4 bike carrier.
 

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Nice work, great pics! You are definitely braver than I. My family would have to cart me away to the funny farm if anything had gone wrong ;) Did you by chance count the number of screws for anyone else who decides to tackle this job so they make sure they got them all before attempting any pulling to release snap clips.
 

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Great job...and awesome pics of the process. Pulling that rear panel off must be nerve-wracking, to say the least.

I'm looking at this job over the summer. Did you need to modify the piece under the car for the hitch to fit? Jag's accessories website lists another part # there for cars with hitches installed from the factory.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks New to Cats! It was definitely nerve racking! You're right about people messing up behind closed doors,..happens more than we would all like to know about.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Hi Dabitz,

You are correct. Once the screws are removed from each wheel well and within the hatch area, you first pull the lower edge where the surround meets the rear fender. Once that pops (it's the toughest one to pop,..or at least it seemed that way as anxiety was on red alert at that moment),..the others aren't easy to disengage, but with the right amount of pressure they did just that. I kinda pushed my
one hand up behind as my other hand pulled from the front. You have to be mindful not to bend that panel more than a few degrees. Paint has flex agents in it to prevent cracking, but I certainly don't wanna come near to testing it's limits!

This is the type of install where you MUST have another person helping you to hold the panel on the opposite side of the one you're working on. For example, when I was pulling on the driver's side rear part of the rear surround, my son held the center right of it back by the hatch opening. And once you pop-off the driver's side of the panel completely, you must have that other person hold it closer to you so you have 2 free hands with which to unplug 2 electrical connectors. There were only those 2 on the driver's side and none on the passenger side, however I wonder if a car with more options than mine would have something else somewhere else back there to unplug?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hi Cat Lady,


From my memory, on each the left and right sides there are the 2 screws that hold that narrow .blade/wheel well adornment strip, then (I think) 5 more within the wheel well under the lining (some are T20/Torx screws, some Phillips). Then there are 2- 10 mm hex bolts within the open hatch area, and 2 Phillips head screws,..2 plastic push plugs that spread molly-like also within the open hatch area. Under the car there are 3 Phillips and 2 10mm bolts holding the underbody panel. It is this panel that you need to center, layout and cut a 6" x 3.25" rectangular opening to accept the hanging hitch.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Hello Dakar 09!

The instructions (provided with the hitch and including decent pics) for this the Curt 2" receiver hitch made for the F-Pace requires the layout and cutting of a 6" x 3.25" rectangular hole centered against the front edge of the panel (the edge closest to the rear of the car). It says there may be additional cutting, so in my case, I waited to install the hitch, then got under the car and test fit that panel as closely as it would snug against the hanging hitch to better estimate where to cut. I did the old "Measure Twice,. Cut Once" thing, but in my case I think I measured 4 or 5 times! In the end, I was able to leave about a 1/4" - 5/16" strip across the rear edge so as not to have it break through and to provide some more structural rigidity for the panel on that one side. I used a dremel fit with a narrow, mini cutting wheel that made quick work of cutting through the plastic. The panel now fits perfectly and with about 1/4" spacing around where the hitch pokes through.

I didn't know about the Jag panel for their hitch and wonder how closely it's opening is shaped to the one I cut.
 
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HOLY CRAP !!! My Friend , YOU are either *Board Certified KOOKOO* , or YOU just happen to have the *BIGGEST SET of BOBBALONES* I have EVER seen !!! >:)

Either way , *CONGRATULATIONS* on your SUCCESS !!! ;) LOOKS AWESOME !!! :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Hey GRVR!
I believe I uttered "BABBALOUIE" while pulling on that panel and hunkering down/tensing up on the BOBBALONES as you put it.
It's been 2 evenings since the install and when I look back on those pics I posted here, I still can't believe that I WAS nuts enough to pull off that surround.

I completely put my faith in the instructions given and figured screw-it,.. who am I to question the process?! Biking season is upon us now and I need to train for the coming events.

I'll attempt just about anything with regards to projects and installs,..except for home electrical work :0

I appreciate the compliments,
;)
 
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Hey GRVR!
I believe I uttered "BABBALOUIE" while pulling on that panel and hunkering down/tensing up on the BOBBALONES as you put it.
It's been 2 evenings since the install and when I look back on those pics I posted here, I still can't believe that I WAS nuts enough to pull off that surround.

I completely put my faith in the instructions given and figured screw-it,.. who am I to question the process?! Biking season is upon us now and I need to train for the coming events.

I'll attempt just about anything with regards to projects and installs,..except for home electrical work :0

I appreciate the compliments,
;)
No problem ! The compliments were WELL DESERVED !!! :)
Hopefully you can join us for the next *Mid-Atlantic MEET & GREET* ,
because a *Little Bit of CRAZY* can be a *WHOLE LOTTA FUN* sometimes !!! >:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Hi Gino,...looks great! Did you also use the Curt Hitch?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
GRVR,
That would be great! Hopefully I'll be able to make it.
 
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Hi Gino,...looks great! Did you also use the Curt Hitch?
He did (saw it in his "new owner" thread. Both of you have pretty much convinced me on the Curt hitch, and not getting that under-body piece from Jag to make it work.

Did the hitch itself come with the instructions on how to remove the panel, or did you get those from Jaguar?
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Dakar,
The Curt hitch comes with instructions which are fairly accurate. They don't embellish on every (needed) detail, however if you have a question I'd be happy to assist you. For example, Curt lists some of the inner wheel well screws as T25 Torx, however I had T20's (not sure if Jag uses different head sizes at times), and they listed the head sizes if the hex bolts as 8mm, when mine were 10 mm. This aren't huge things, especially if you have enough tools in your collection.

The biggest pain in the a*** that I found was they (Curt) didn't recommend to pull the rear wheels to aid in locating and easily removing all screws. That alone was THE biggest problem and time waster for me. It is also imperative but not mentioned that when reinstalling the rear surround, that you align ALL inner wheel well clips into proper position. If not, it will be virtually impossible to reinstall all of the screws.
Lastly, you must use a torque wrench ( I think the setting was 126 ft pounds) to insure proper torque. The fitment of the hitch is snug and you have to align and hold the bumper bar with it while evenly reinstalling the heavy bolts (a good 5 gallon bucket and blocks of wood worked for me).
Good luck and please share pics of the end result!
Jeff
 

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This is great information, Loop! I appreciate the thorough response (and the D-Type avatar ;) )
 

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Loop,

As someone who tried this install, and eventually gave up, kudos! I spent about 3 hours just trying to get the bumper off, and was too worried I would damage it, so I eventually stopped. I was giving it so much force that I felt I would break it if I pulled any harder. Are you saying "give it all you've got?" I'm willing to try it again but terrified about snapping a piece off the bumper. It appeared to me there was a nut holding in the bumper at the area I was getting stuck, but it was inaccessible with a tool, and also not on the directions, so I assumed it was irrelevant to holding the bumper on.

If I get brave, I may try again.

Anyway - nice work!
 
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