There were rumblings an all-electric F-Pace was going to be Jaguar’s first electric car, and here we are with the I-Pace Concept, which is hitting production sooner than you may think.
So just what is the Jaguar I-Pace about, what can it do and should you care about it? Here is everything you need to know about it (and some stuff you don’t) to help you decide, including when it will arrive in the UK, how far it can go between charges and just how fast it can go (clue: very).
1) Performance is plentiful
Tesla showed electric cars can be fast. Jaguar is going for a similar approach, with a twin-electric motor setup (one on the front axle and one at the rear one) providing 394.5bhp and 516lb/ft (700NM) of torque whenever you need it. We also know it will do 0-60mph in around four seconds, although the top speed aspect is to be confirmed. A 90kWh battery gives the I-Pace an EPA range of around 220 miles and, thanks to being liquid-cooled, it should operate consistently whether it is very hot or very cold.
2) Jaguar has been clever with the design…
No engine means Jaguar had greater flexibility when designing the I-Pace. The bonnet and overhangs are shorter, allowing the cabin area in the middle to be stretched so the five passengers it can carry get more space. It also has a 530-litre boot, 28-litre front storage compartment and eight-litre central storage area where the transmission tunnel would normally be. Plus it looks suitably futuristic, much like the BMW i3, and its drag coefficient of 0.29 is impressive. But not quite Tesla Model X impressive.
3) …but without clogging up the school run
Even though the I-Pace is almost the same length as the entry-level XE saloon, it has a far longer wheelbase – just 23mm shorter than a Range Rover Sport, in fact. The total length is 4,680mm, while the width is 1,890mm. A road-hogging Chelsea tractor, this most certainly isn’t, yet it offers similar levels of practicality and looks less, well, beefy and showy.
4) It should be a comfortable cruiser
Suspension for the front comes in the form of a double-wishbone setup at the front, as seen on the F-Pace and F-Type. Jaguar claims there is no better system out there and we would at least agree it’s capable. As for the back of the I-Pace, expect the Integral Link setup you get on the XE and XF, both of which offer a comfortable, forgiving ride without making them feel numb and lifeless.
5) It practically hugs trees as it passes them
Electric cars are far from perfect, but as energy is made using greener methods it makes recharging the I-Pace more planet-friendly than petrol or diesel. Plus you can ditch the need to ever use a petrol station again, avoid getting oil on your clothes and simply plug it in at home. The big point, of course, is that there are zero tailpipe emissions and that is a good thing when air pollution kills a lot of people every year. Who says the school run has to be dirty?
6) The interior is a bit fancy
We rather like Jaguar interiors but some get panned for being too bland. That is far from the case here, as you get Moonstone Alcantara on the seat backs, while Windsor leather, contrasting twin-needle stitching and coloured carbon fibre trim covers the front. Where you would normally have analogue dials, you get a 12-inch TFT touchscreen and another display elsewhere for your infotainment needs. As for the looks, we are ruddy pleased with that simplistic, relatively button-free layout.
7) It comes with a starry night
Most manufacturers are happy to offer a panoramic roof. Jaguar has made the I-Pace go on better because its pattern glass interpretation lets light in through the day and a collection of embedded LEDs creates the effect of a starry sky when it gets dark. If that doesn’t keep the little ones asleep, especially if you bust out the lullabies on Spotify, we don’t know what will.
8) You can charge it up quickly
Find yourself a 50kW charger, of which there are few admittedly, and the Jaguar I-Pace will charge itself from zero to 80 per cent capacity in 80 minutes, while a 100 per cent charge takes two hours. Expect more typical charging points to take longer, of course, but that 220-mile range will mean most people can get away with just one or two car-to-plug sessions a week.
9) Formula E glory will go into the car
Jaguar announced it would be entering into Formula E and it has once again said any relevant expertise gained in the eco-friendly Formula One rival will filter down into its road cars. That means range improvements, improved performance, weight reduction tricks – the I-Pace and future electric cars will benefit in some way.
10) The wait won’t be too long
The I-Pace is a concept, but Jaguar also called it a ‘preview’ of a car that will be on the road in 2018, just when things could get interesting for the car industry. “It is my belief that over the next five years we will see more changes in the automotive world than in the last three decades,” said Jaguar Land Rover group engineering director Nick Rogers. The I-Pace, then, is just the start.