The growl is gone, but the speed, performance and brand pizzazz haven’t gone anywhere in the latest Jaguar.
The British luxury automotive brand on Thursday revealed its first-ever electric vehicle: the Jaguar I-PACE.
The 2019 I-PACE, which made its debut at a Jaguar plant in Austria, is a mid-size sport-utility vehicle with a range of 240 miles on a full battery charge. It goes from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 4.5 seconds and has 394 horsepower.
That’s about the same as the range for the base model of perhaps the vehicle’s toughest competitor, the Tesla Model X crossover.
Based on the Jaguar C-X75 concept vehicle, the I-PACE is set to hit U.S. dealerships in the second half of 2018, and the company is now accepting orders. Jaguar will reveal pricing Tuesday at the Geneva auto show.
The vehicle, which will be built in Austria, joins a growing lineup of Jaguar SUVs that have helped expand the luxury brand beyond its stalwart passenger cars.
The typical home-charging unit, which usually costs several hundred dollars, will allow I-PACE owners to fill up 80% of their battery on electricity within about 10 hours. A rapid-charging unit would get an 80% charge in 40 minutes.
More Detail About Jaguar
Jaguar is roughly a decade late to the compact-luxury SUV segment, so it’s no wonder company officials sound a bit reluctant about this whole crossover movement. They want to keep steering the discussion of the company’s first SUV, the F-Pace, back to its sporting credentials and its somewhat tenuous visual and mechanical—and nomenclatural!—connections to the F-type sports car.
It certainly looks athletic, as if the front and rear of a more traditional SUV form have been pinched and yanked into the F-Pace’s taut, muscular shape and classic rear-drive proportions. Jaguar designers should be celebrated for their curation of the F-Pace’s details, which buck the current trend toward overdesign—have you seen the new Lexus RX? They really knew when to lift their pens.
But all this sporty talk almost makes it sound as if Jaguar was looking to build a dramatic crossover, even at the cost of severely compromised rear-seat and cargo space. Sure, the enthusiast media would have fawned, and then the vehicle would’ve been salesproof to actual customers.
But Wait, It’s Practical
But that’s not the case; the thing we find so compelling about the F-Pace is that its dynamic excellence is augmented with serious practicality. For instance, its back seat easily accommodates occupants more than six feet tall, with excellent rear legroom, ample foot space under the front seats, and, considering the standard panoramic sunroof, surprisingly reasonable headroom. However, a center rear occupant will have to straddle the hump in the floor that’s there to accommodate the driveshaft, and we wish the seatback cushions were less firm. The F-Pace’s generous cargo hold is nearly twice as spacious as that of the Porsche Macan.
The F-Pace is no dynamic slouch; it offers exceptionally sharp on-center steering precision and great turn-in response. Steering effort is on the light side, but that likely helps impart the feel of frisky eagerness. (Selecting Dynamic mode adds additional heft.) Also helping is a claimed 50/50 weight distribution and an all-wheel-drive system that stays rear-drive until torque is needed at the front axle. Body control is excellent, and the structure and steering column feel extraordinarily rigid. Even the ride comfort on the upsized 22-inch wheels is better than expected. Helping the ride cause is Jaguar’s stubborn refusal to employ run-flat tires, which we salute, and this means—hooray!—the inclusion of a compact spare tire, an increasingly rare feature. Sure, turn off the stability control and hurl it into a corner like, say, an F-type, and the jig will be up, as it starts to spin the inside tires due to the lack of limited-slip differentials and single-wheel brake applications. But let’s not get too crazy; the F-Pace is a crossover, after all.
Most F-Pace variants will be available in four trim levels: base, Premium, Prestige, and R-Sport. All the vehicles we drove had the $1000 Adaptive Dynamics package, available on the Prestige and R-Sport, which includes electronically adaptive Bilstein shocks. This package usefully lets you customize the F-Pace’s Dynamic mode according to driver preference from a menu of separate engine, transmission, steering, and suspension settings. The ride is seriously tied down in Dynamic mode, so the Normal setting is the way to go when traveling over any kind of cratered surface, as it allows the suspension to move through more of its travel.
VEHICLE TYPE: front-engine, 4-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 4-door hatchback
BASE PRICES: 20d, $41,985;
ENGINE TYPES: turbocharged and intercooled DOHC 16-valve diesel 2.0-liter inline-4, 180 hp, 318 lb-ft; supercharged and intercooled DOHC 24-valve 3.0-liter V-6, 340 or 380 hp, 332 lb-ft
TRANSMISSION: 8-speed automatic with manual shifting mode
WHEELBASE: 113.1 in
LENGTH: 186.3 in
WIDTH: 76.2 in HEIGHT: 65.6 in
PASSENGER VOLUME: 96 cu ft
CARGO VOLUME: 34 cu ft
CURB WEIGHT (C/D EST): 4150-4250 lb
PERFORMANCE (C/D EST):
Zero to 60 mph: 4.9-7.8 sec
Zero to 100 mph: 11.9-20.0 sec
Standing ¼-mile: 13.6-16.0 sec
Top speed: 129-155 mph
FUEL ECONOMY (MFR’S EST):
EPA city/highway driving: 18-26/23-31 mpg