Imagine yourself driving five years from now, then imagine again being driven around ten years from now. What indeed will happen is that the green badged cars will outnumber and almost camouflage the white plate. On the contrary, for self-driving vehicles, still not sure, and this is where my imagination fails. Almost every Auto Manufacturer has an EV plugged in right into their mainstream strategy, with products rolled, and when all the forces come together, things happen. Just like CD/DVD drives in cars today are redundant, petrol pumps in the future might look like colossal charging stations. Who knows?

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All these build up because now Mercedes EQC has serious competition in the luxury SUV space in the shape of Audi E Tron and the Jaguar I-Pace, and it’s the latter we have picked today and narrowed down ten things that you need to know about the Quiet cat.

Range

It is the most anxious word when it comes to EV, it’s the deal-breaker, and somewhere, it’s always lingering in your mind while driving. In the I-Pace, it’s claimed to be 460-480km on a full charge in WLTP, and factors like hammering the car over 80 km suck in more electricity than on city driving with constant braking.

The magical part is that an EV rewards you with braking and driving at low speeds by recouping some chargeback in the form of regeneration. Of course, this process will expose the brake pads to their core, but it will do 350 Km reliably, no matter what your driving condition or style is. Now, if you have a daily commute of over 350 Km, then you have a much bigger problem on your hands. We unplugged it with a range of 400km, and after driving for nearly 140km, it was left with 200km more to cover. Almost – 60 km has been literally electrocuted owing to driving conditions.

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Acceleration & Drive

It offers a comfortable ride, thanks to its standard air suspension and satisfying steering. It has a familiar Jaguar driver interface and an alluring design engineered specifically for this model. Plus, the batteries are tucked nicely under the surface, which allows the car to maintain its balance while dealing with the tight corners and gives it a superficial centre of gravity with a 50:50 weight distribution. Once you hammer the accelerator, I-PACE’s linear acceleration is instantaneous with no lag and no gear shift interruptions. It does hit 0-100 Km in 4.8 seconds, and the initial thrust is just mind-blowing, even faster than Porsche Cayman.

Power & Numbers

The I-Pace makes 400hp and 696Nm from its dual motors and draws power from a 90kwh lithium-ion battery pack. The futuristic-looking car drives genuinely well and boasts a standard all-wheel-drive option, all thanks to the two electric motors placed at the front and rear. The dual motors are up to 97 percent efficient when transferring power from the battery to the motor and help the car boost like a whirlwind.

Jaguar I-pace review

Let’s Size it up; it matters

By looking at the dimensions on paper, the car looks small and somehow similar to the Jaguar’s smallest sedan, the XE. Still, the vehicle amazes you when you encounter it in real life. It’s 4682 mm long and stands 1566 mm tall; the all-electric car with a ground clearance of 174 mm easily beats its rival  Mercedes-Benz EQC, which has 142 mm of Ground Clearance. The kerb weight of the Jaguar I-Pace, which is the actual weight of a car without any baggage and passenger, is 2133 Kg which is 300 kg lighter than the Mercedes EQC and 400 kg lighter than the Audi e-tron. In addition, the wheelbase of almost 3000 mm makes the handling phenomenally planted and agile at corners.

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Exterior

As an electric car and an SUV, Jaguar fits perfectly in the top two competing sectors of the car market. The I-Pace’s revolutionary design is both true to the spirit of Jaguar and the I-Pace concept, but it is polarizing indeed. The bold grille curves inwards, reducing drag by channelling air through the bonnet scoop and out, where it passes over a curved roofline for maximum efficiency. The slim futuristic LED headlights feature Jaguar’s signature double ‘J’ blade graphic. It gets 19-inch alloy wheels, LED headlamps, front and rear parking sensors, a 360-degree camera, connected tech, two-zone climate control and a powered tailgate. The profile is outstanding, with a cab-forward design and fits well with Jaguar’s other crossover, F-Pace. But to some, the design might not be appealing.

Interior

Jaguar I-Pace reimagines the classic Jaguar balance of sports car focus and luxury craftsmanship for the digital age. The car is elegant and finely designed; it carries the impression throughout the cabin. The electric architecture defines the five-seater cabin’s character, and the fixed panoramic roof ensures that airflow will pass around the entire exterior. The cabin creates a luxurious atmosphere, and fine contrast twin-needle stitching adds tailored sophistication to the seats. The front seats are placed further forward, creating a sufficient scope and making perfect space even for tall occupants. Driver and front passenger seats are designed according to form-fitting sports seats. The only drawback instead is the absence of a sunroof in a crore plus luxury car.

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Tech, it has plenty of it

I-Pace offers all-new navigation, which provides real-time traffic updates and live access to charging points. One can easily interact with a smartphone on I-PACE’s Touch Screen through Android AutoTM and Apple CarPlay. The 12.3-inch high-definition HD Interactive Driver Display provides so much information that you will almost become an automobile engineer. It has screen navigation with 3D mapping, the superb optional Meridian 3D Surround Sound System with TrifieldTM technology delivers all the fullness and clarity of a live performance. Well almost.

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Along with these, the car has a panoramic sunroof that prevents strong sunlight, UV light and heat from entering the cabin, thanks to the infrared absorbing laminate construction. The fixed glass roof helps lighten up the interior with natural light, maintains comfortable cabin temperatures during sunny days, and keeps the cabin warm in cold climates, technology at its best. The remarkable ClearSight lens feature relays a feed from a roof-mounted camera to the rearview mirror. This is the neatest tech and tops the score chart. Pity that the sunroof could not be integrated.

Boot Space & Price

The boot space of the Jaguar I-Pace is a downer; it has about 656 litres of luggage, which is 100 litres more than its rivals. But with the Space saver tyre and the low height, not much usable space is left for the big luggage. Also, the front trunk is only good to carry the charging cable. The prices for Jaguar I-Pace starts at Rs 1.06 crore for the S version, while the top-spec HSE version is available at Rs 1.12 crore in India.

Battery & Charging

It can be charged at home via a 15 Amp socket and by installing an approved Jaguar wall box. In addition, the I-Pace is equipped with an 11 kW 3-phase AC onboard charger, which will help the vehicle fully recharge overnight and deliver up to 53 Km of range per hour.  It has 90kw battery. A typical 50 kW DC fast charger reduces charging time to 1.5 hours and can deliver up to 270 Km of range per hour.

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Verdict

The Jaguar I-Pace is a luxury designed and fascinating all-electric crossover that looks vigorous and drives well. The car offers a highly usable combination of performance, range and luxury, along with the practicality and versatility of a mid-size SUV. If you are in the market for a luxury EV, then a visit to the Jaguar showroom is a must. We could not empty the charge and do a Km/charge test, and you can blame it on the range anxiety.