Jaguar sets new stan­dard for ELECTRICS

The Peterborough Examiner - - Wheels - Story and pho­tos byJim Robin­son

You’d prob­a­bly never think about tak­ing an all-elec­tric ve­hi­cle of­froad­ing, but you can do that and more in the 2019 Jaguar I-Pace.

There I was, af­ter driv­ing through a stream, head­ing straight up a 30 per cent plus grade earthen and stone-strewn path and on high per­for­mance 22-inch sum­mer tires, no less.

This was ac­com­plished us­ing Jaguar’s All-Sur­face Progress Con­trol (ASPC). And that’s just what it is — it will take you up, down and across any­thing.

Set the speed (usu­ally less than 15 km/h) and the ASPC “sees” what’s ahead and then au­to­mat­i­cally moves for­ward and all you have to do is steer —— let­ting the sys­tem deal with brak­ing and ac­cel­er­at­ing.

Come to a steep rise in the road and the ASPC slows down a bit, cal­cu­lates what’s needed to pro­ceed and puts all the data it has col­lected into play and off you go.

Help­ing make this pos­si­ble is stan­dard four-wheel air sus­pen­sion. It can be raised 55 mm at the touch of a but­ton. With that and the ASPC ac­ti­vated, you can go just about any­where a Range Rover can, and semi­au­tonomously.

Propul­sion is based on two, in-house Jaguar de­signed syn­chro­nous per­ma­nent mag­net mo­tors with a sin­gle-speed trans­mis­sion. There is a mo­tor on each axle, re­sult­ing in per­ma­nent all-wheel-drive.

A mas­sive 90 kWh lithium-ion bat­tery pack made up of 432 cells sits un­der the floor of the cabin and pro­duces 394 hp and a whop­ping 512 lb/ ft of power, giv­ing a range of 386 km un­der nor­mal driv­ing con­di­tions.

De­liv­ered with a wall socket charger with a five me­tre cord, the bat­tery can be charged from 0-80 per cent in 40 min­utes when us­ing a 100 kW DC fast charger.

The I-Pace is one of the very first ve­hi­cles to of­fer one-pedal driv­ing which, in my opin­ion, is the fu­ture of driv­ing.

There is a pedal on the right, but it acts like a gi­ant rheo­stat in that the more you press down, the faster the I-Pace goes. But — and it’s a big but — when you lift the pedal, re­gen­er­a­tive brak­ing kicks in and hauls down the speed of the I-Pace very, very swiftly.

I first ex­pe­ri­enced this on the Nis­san Leaf EV ear­lier this year, but the sys­tem on the I-Pace is more as­sertive as be­fits a ve­hi­cle that has a 0-100 km ac­cel­er­a­tion time of 4.8 sec­onds and a top speed of 124 mph

By mod­u­lat­ing the pedal you can hold any pace. But when there is a curve or bend in the road, you lift and the I-Pace slows. Af­ter a very short time you learn just how much to lift and/or an­tic­i­pate dis­tances and brake ac­cord­ingly to come to a full stop.

There is a brake pedal in the usual spot, if needed. FYI very time you lift, the brake lights come on to alert the driver be­hind you.

It took maybe 10 km to get ac­cus­tomed to it, af­ter which it be­came sec­ond na­ture and, be­lieve it or not, en­joy­able.

On some very twisty Por­tuguese roads pep­pered with blind bends, I drove without ever touch­ing the brake.

Por­tu­gal is also the land of round­abouts. Cruis­ing up to one and glid­ing through was sim­pler than the two-pedal brak­ing and ac­cel­er­at­ing we are used to.

The I-Pace uses Ar­ti­fi­cial In­tel­li­gence to col­lect data on weather, to­pog­ra­phy, driv­ing style, cli­mate set­tings and traf­fic con­di­tions.

From this, it “learns” from the driver and can au­tonomously ad­just pref­er­ences such as seat po­si­tion, cli­mate con­trol and ra­dio set­tings at dif­fer­ent times of the day and even re­mind the driver if he/she has for­got­ten a smart­phone. But wait, there’s more. The I-Pace is fit­ted with Alexa through the Jaguar InCon­trol app, where you can ask things like is the I-Pace locked or how much range is left in the bat­tery.

The I-Pace can also talk to your home and can con­trol lights, locks and heat­ing/air con­di­tion­ing through the Jaguar HomeLink Con­nect sys­tem found on the cen­tre touch­screen.

Just to make sure you’re con­nected, there are three, 12-volt sock­ets and six USB ports.

Lastly there is a full-length sun­roof cu­ri­ously without a sun­shade. That’s be­cause it’s not needed, as the glass panel ab­sorbs in­frared UV light which, in turn, keeps the cabin cooler with the added ben­e­fit of more head­room.

On the high­way, there’s near si­lence, ex­cept for the whirr com­ing from the elec­tric mo­tors.

Be­cause the sus­pen­sion is self-lev­el­ling, ir­reg­u­lar­i­ties are soaked up for the most part.

The afore­men­tioned re­gen­er­a­tive brak­ing has a high and low set­ting, with the high mak­ing one pedal driv­ing pos­si­ble, and I can’t see any real need for low.

At high­way speeds, the sus­pen­sion au­to­mat­i­cally low­ers the I-Pace 10 mm, which along with the low cen­tre of grav­ity caused by the bat­tery makes it more sta­ble.

Come up to an off-ramp and lift and the re­gen kicks in with a force of up to 0.4G so you don’t have to touch the brake pedal.

At the end of a full day of driv­ing, us­ing re­gen to the max, I still had 57 per cent bat­tery charge re­main­ing.

With one-pedal driv­ing ca­pa­bil­ity and a us­able range of 386 km, what Jaguar has done is cre­ate a whole new seg­ment – the com­pact elec­tric cross­over, a seg­ment where it has no com­pe­ti­tion.

Now that’s what I call set­ting the cat among the birds. BODY STYLE: Five-seat, com­pact elec­tric ve­hi­cle (EV). DRIVE METHOD: Sin­gledrive trans­mis­sion, per­ma­nent all-wheel-drive PROPUL­SION: Twin syn­chro­nous elec­tric mo­tors (394 hp, 512 ft/lb com­bined); 90 kWh lithium-ion bat­tery pack FUEL ECON­OMY: Elec­tric equiv­a­lent be­ing de­ter­mined CARGO: 638 litres be­hind sec­ond row seats; 1,445 litres folded BAT­TERY WAR­RANTY: eight years, 160,000 km with 70 per cent state of health PRICE: S, $86,500; SE, $92,500; HSE, $96,500; LE First Edi­tion, $103,500

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