Friday 2nd March 2018.
Coming up today we’ll talk exclusively about the Jaguar I-PACE and why it deserves the term game-changer. The global digital reveal featured Johnny Smith who shared the most interesting specs on the car, which is being assembled in Graz in Austria. So let me tell you my personal Top 10 highlights from the I-PACE launch.
10. Strong Regen – this is an essential on any car which follows the Nissan LEAF with the exceptional ePedal. I-PACE has two levels of regen and on the strongest setting is enough to mean you’ll rarely use the brake pedal. But will it also apply friction brakes like the LEAF? We’ll wait to find out.
9. Battery Preconditioning – batteries are a bit like us humans, we’re happy about 20 degrees C. And when the I-PACE is plugged in it will use thermal management to ensure your precious electrons are kept at the perfect temperature. It’s thanks to a heat pump for when it’s cold.
8. The Tech – Jaguar’s recent InControl® Touch Pro Duo? infotainment System, which we first saw on the Range Rover Velar and later on the 2018 Range Rover and Range Rover Sport, plus Touch Pro Duo, which relies on a pair of innovative touchscreens which work in conjunction with capacitive sensors and tactile physical controls, It’s not all just one big screen like a Model 3, you still have a couple of buttons where Jaguar thought they were necessary.
7. Alexa – all part of the connected car. You can ask your Amazon Echo device: “Is my car locked?,” “What is the charging level?,” and “Do I have enough range to get to work?”
6. The Size – not too big, not too small. Not to tall, not too low. Short overhangs to make the most of the battery platform and get the most interior space, keeping only the room at the front needed for the crash structure. The short, low bonnet and curved rear screen make the Tesla Model X look a bit old and flabby.
5. The Range – 300 miles. 90kWh battery. CCS Combo charger for rapid charging. The charging speed is officially 100kW. 0-80% in 45 minutes.
4. I-PACE eTrophy – OK this is a bit of a cheat because it wasn’t revealed today, but it’s important to expose the cars to a new audience. These will be 30 minute races supporting FormulaE, with 20 cars on track at once. Cars will be modified for racing with extra aero and diffuser.
3. Performance – 0-60 in 4.5 seconds. That’s sports car performance. Two motors, designed by Jaguar, both and rear. Of equal size. Jaguar have a tradition of sporty, well handing cars they will want to uphold. Optional air suspension, which can actually lower the car by a full 10mm at speed, to reduce drag. The battery is all down low along the bottom of the car to lower the centre of gravity to make an SUV handle like a sports car with 50:50 weight distribution. It’s 394hp or 298kw of power.
2. Value – £63,495 for the base model, and in the UK you can take off £4,500 for the plug in grant, bringing you down to £58,995. There are three trim levels plus a First Edition model, and one drivetrain / battery size. It’s all aluminium and comes with a three year, unlimited mileage warranty on the car, and an 8-year battery warranty.
There’s price parity with a Model S 75, and with the Jaguar you get a much larger battery; the same range; 394bhp vs 329 for the Tesla; almost 50% more torque; an interior that would feel at home in any Range Rover; and a similar 0-60 time to the Tesla. And Jaguar have done all that before every other major manufacturer, making significant investments.
1. Over The Air (OTA) Updates – I thought long and hard about what to make number one on my Top 10, and let me tell you why this is so important. ICE cars have had 100 years to get to where they are now: still polluting, still inefficient, still made of too many parts, still reliant on having you take it to a dealer when it has a fault who plugs it in. Whereas in a few short years, the pace of change for EVs is much faster, from batteries to drivetrains to operating systems.
All of that means your car is far more like your mobile phone which, as it’s basically some commoditised hardware being made special by custom software, the same culture of OTA updates will apply.
The idea of buying a car and it still being the same car in 12 months is quickly becoming old fashioned, very soon people will expect their car to be updated just like their phone, as new safety features or efficiencies are developed. The architecture of an EV, that of a battery + hardware + software lends itself to constant improvement. You only need to look at Tesla to see what I’m talking about. Well done Jaguar.
Finally a couple of housekeeping points. A documentary, titled ‘Fully Charged’ aired at the end of the webcast, giving a behind the scenes insight into the creators of the Jaguar I-PACE. Watch it here on the Jaguar website. Also I chose my Top 10 articles about the I-PACE reveal which I’ve linked to in the podcast description, and also on my blog page where all the podcasts go at https://www.evnewsdaily.com
The order books are open now. I’ll be searching down the back of the sofa for some extra spare change.
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