AT A GLANCE
PRICE $119,000-$159,700 SERVICE/WARRANTY 5 years’ free service, 5 yrs/200,000km warranty
ENGINE 2 electric motors, 90kWh lithium-ion battery, 294kW/696Nm
SAFETY 5 stars, 6 airbags, AEB, driver monitor, lane keep assist, rear traffic monitor and 360 degree parking camera
SPARE None; repair kit
BOOT 656L leather costs more and active cruise control with high-speed autonomous emergency braking and blind spot warning are in a $1740 option pack. As an alternative to the Tesla Model X, though, it’s more than competitive.
Standard fare includes a high-definition centre screen and a configurable digital readout in front of the driver, two-zone aircon, satnav and wi-fi hotspot.
Safety gear includes traffic sign recognition, lane keep assist and a “clear exit monitor” that helps when pulling out into traffic.
The cabin can be pre-warmed or cooled while it’s still plugged into the wall, so you don’t waste valuable battery life.
Jaguar expects customers to do 90 per cent of their charging at home and is selling a wall charger from $2280 that will give roughly 35km of range for each hour plugged in, compared with 11km an hour for a standard household power point.
For long distance travellers, Jaguar says there are roughly 150 charging stations around the country and the number is growing. The available tech can replenish about 270km of the range in one hour at a cost of $5.70 per 100km.
ON THE ROAD
Behind the wheel, the Jaguar has all the wow factor of a Tesla and more. The cabin is beautifully presented with quality materials and modern finishes, complemented by crystal
clear, high-definition readouts. Leg and headroom are on par with mid-size SUVs and luggage space is decent.
Acceleration is neck-snapping off the mark, thanks to the instant torque and all-wheel drive traction created by electric motors at each axle.
Extensive use of aluminium panels means the I-Pace is much lighter than a Tesla, translating to a more nimble car. You can still feel its weight through tighter corners but precise steering and impressive grip mean it’s genuinely enjoyable to drive. It can’t tow, unlike the Tesla, which is rated at 2250kg
With the standard suspension the ride can get a bit fidgety over pockmarked roads but overall it’s a good blend of luxury and sportiness. The optional air suspension delivers a noticeably smoother ride over rough roads.
Regenerative braking means you can accelerate and slow by pressing and lifting off the accelerator. It takes some getting used to, especially in the more aggressive braking setting, but after a while it becomes intuitive.
The range claims appear realistic. On a hot day, with plenty of hills, highway driving and the odd accidental detour, the I-Pace delivered pretty close to its 400km promise.
The I-Pace is the best luxury electric vehicle on the market, if you can afford it.