Jaguar kicked off the week in style with the unveiling of the company’s new I-PACE electric SUV Concept.
Introduced ahead of the 2016 LA Auto Show, the I-PACE will serve as the basis for a production variant that is set to hit the market in 2018.
“This isn’t just a concept. It is a preview of a five-seat production car that will be on the road in 2018,” Jaguar design director Ian Callum said in a statement.
“This will be Jaguar’s first-ever battery-powered electric vehicle and opens a new chapter in the history of our legendary brand.”
For Jag, the production I-PACE is expected to make history for the brand when it arrives in a couple of years.
“The I-PACE will be the first luxury entrant in the all-electric compact SUV segment,” Jaguar Land Rover North America CEO Joe Eberhardt told Business Insider in an interview.
Jaguar is serious about getting this purpose-built electric vehicle right.
According to Eberhardt, the I-PACE’s chassis was specially developed for a battery electric vehicle and is designed to take advantage of its non-internal combustion powertrain. For instance, the concept’s cabin is pushed forward, which increases interior space while offering the driver better visibility of the road.
This sets Jaguar apart from already announced compact electric SUVs that are derived from existing internal combustion models, Eberhardt said.
Stylish exterior aside, the electric SUV concept boasts some truly impressive stats. Underneath the Callum-designed sheet metal is a liquid-cooled 90 kWh battery pack powered by a pair of 200 hp electric motors placed at each axle. Like the dual-motor Tesla’s on the road today, this gives the I-PACE an all-wheel-drive system without the need for bulky drive shafts.
According to the British luxury automaker, with 400 horsepower and 516 lb./ft. of torque on tap, the I-PACE is capable of reaching 60 mph in just 4.0 seconds and can go 220 miles on a single charge.
Jaguar claims the electric SUV’s battery pack can be fully charged in about two hours using 50kW DC fast charging.
Inside, the cabin has room for five passengers along with a host of digital displays and elegant design touches. The cabin interior is finished in fine Windsor leather, aluminium, carbon fibre, and Alcantara.
In front of the driver is a 12-inch HD, virtual instrument cluster while the center console is dominated by a 10-inch TFT display along with a secondary 5.5-inch display.
In addition, the instrument panel’s burl wood surface is laser etched with the words, “Lovingly crafted by Jaguar. Est. Coventry 1935.”
Nice touch Sir Ian!
When asked, Eberhardt declined to comment in detail on the I-PACE’s pricing. However, the Jaguar boss did hint that the I-PACE will likely be priced at the same level as comparable luxury offerings from other luxury brands like Porsche. Thus, expect the I-PACE to carry an asking price north of $50,000.
The 2016 LA Auto Show is open to the public from November 18 through the 27th.
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