- Exceptional performance that lives up to the Jaguar name
- Great driving range between charges
- All new Pivi Pro infotainment system is a great improvement
- Expensive initial outlay and options really bump up the price
- Limited visibility through rear screen
- More competition nowadays with the likes of the Audi e-tron, Ford Mustang Mach-E and Mercedes EQC
The five-door, five-seater I-PACE was Jaguar’s first venture into full electrification and it has been a resounding success since launch back in 2018.
At the time, Jaguar described it as the most important car in decades as it needed to offer all the dynamism and performance ability associated with the Big Cat name. It also needed to fulfil its task as a practical SUV with active families in mind. And, finally it needed to tick the full electrification box too while offering impressive driving range between charges.
The car achieved all its goals scooping more than 80 global awards and in 2021, with recent upgrades, is still the SUV EV to beat in the premium sector.
On The Road
The Jaguar I-PACE is available in three trim levels called S, SE and HSE with all models powered by a 90kWh battery driving two electric motors that deliver 400hp of power and 696Nm of torque. Those figures translate into impressive performance stats with a 0-60mph sprint time of 4.5 seconds and top speed of 124mph. Perhaps most importantly, to quell any range anxiety fears, the car boasts a ‘real world’ driving range of up to 292 miles between charges.
With the battery pack positioned as low as possible between the two axles, the I-PACE benefits from perfect 50:50 weight distribution and a low centre of gravity for agile, spirited driving dynamics. There is minimal lean into tight bends and the car feels well balanced with nicely-weighted steering.
Being an EV it benefits from instant power and acceleration as you do not need to wait for the revs to build, so it is very quick out the starting blocks and there is a constant stream of power on tap when sharp bursts of pace are needed to overtake slower moving vehicles.
Various drive modes alter the car’s responses considerably and these are called Eco, Comfort and Dynamic, along with a separate mode for Rain, Ice and Snow to keep you motoring in more adverse driving conditions. There is also AWD for added grip.
With a sportier performance being key to the I-PACE’s personality, the ride is definitely on the firmer side, although it certainly couldn’t be described as uncomfortable in any way.
Our test car, in entry-level S trim, was riding on 18-inch alloys which were the perfect match. As you move up through the trim levels, the wheel sizes can be increased to 20-inches which may prove less forgiving over rougher road surfaces.
The ride does get a little edgier when driving in Dynamic mode which is only to be expected, but for longer motorway journeys, the Comfort setting is ideal for miles and miles of relaxed driving with minimal body sway.
However, when faced with the faster-moving B roads, the I-PACE is always willing to show its sporty potential. The reactions are instant, the road holding assured and the steering is beautifully weighted with plenty of feel and feedback.
And although we stayed strictly to the Tarmac on our test drive, the I-PACE is well equipped to venture off road when needed.
Clearly, the regenerative braking system plays a pivotal role in all EVs and the I-PACE is no exception. There are different settings and, at its highest, you barely need touch the brake pedal to bring the car to a standstill which makes busier city centre driving with lots of stop start traffic more enjoyable.
The Jaguar I-PACE looks bold and dynamic when viewed from any angle with a powerful stance and eye-catching curves. Taking its design influence from the C-X75 supercar, it features a short, low bonnet, an aero-enhanced roof design and curved rear screen.
The active vanes in the grille open when cooling is required but close when not needed to redirect air through the bonnet scoop, so smoothing out the airflow.
There are front and rear LED light clusters, a body-coloured roof, tailgate spoiler, flush exterior door handles, a rear bumper with gloss black valance, black door claddings, chrome window surrounds and 18-inch gloss dark grey alloy wheels to complete the look.
Customers can also choose from a wider range of colours on the latest model with Portofino Blue, Eiger Grey and Caldera Red being a few options.
The interior is beautifully plush and oozes quality at every turn. Our test car featured ebony grained leather sports seats as a no-cost option. They were power-operated with a memory function to store favourite driving positions and were exceptionally comfortable.
When it comes to cabin refinement the I-PACE is fitted with the likes of an acoustic laminated windscreen, along with all manner of insulation to protect occupants from outside noise.
In The Car
Behind the Wheel
It’s once you take your seat inside the latest I-PACE that the most relevant enhancements are immediately noticeable with a cleaner, crisper interior featuring the very latest 10-inch Pivi Pro infotainment set-up. This also features an EV-specific feature highlighting where the closest charge points are located on a navigation route, their availability and cost.
This screen is where you can access Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, as well as controls for the pitch perfect Meridian sound system, DAB digital radio and lots more besides.
Beneath this panel is a separate screen for all the climate control operations and then there is an interactive driver display screen behind the steering wheel that offers all manner of EV-related information such as charge levels and driving range, as well as the more traditional readouts. It all looks really swish and is nice and easy to operate on the move.
The I-PACE also benefits from automatic wireless over-the-air updates to ensure customers always have the very latest software.
Getting comfortable takes just seconds with a power adjustable seat and manually-adjustable heated steering wheel, and with the relatively elevated seating position the driver benefits from excellent visibility forwards and sideways. There are quite large B pillars that restrict the over-the-shoulder visibility and the design of the car with its tapering roofline results in a fairly narrow rear window too.
Space & Practicality
The Jaguar I-PACE is billed as a five-door, five-seat SUV and, as such, needs to offer great all-round versatility with enough space to accommodate a family and all their kit for an adventurous weekend away. And to be fair, it does just that.
Up front, there is oodles of room to stretch out and there is enough space for three adults in the back if they don’t mind sitting snuggly and the front seats are not pushed back too far. Ideally though, the space would be perfect for a trio of youngsters and there are plenty of USB ports along with 4G WiFi for up to eight devices to keep passengers occupied on the fly.
When it comes to storage, the deep boot can swallow 656 litres of kit. That limit increases to 1,453 litres with the 60:40 split-folding rear seats dropped and there is a further 27-litre storage compartment beneath the bonnet – where an engine would normally be found.
Then scattered throughout the car are deep door pockets, a cubby box beneath the front armrest, a lockable glovebox, netted pockets in the seat backs, a sunglasses holder, a compartment under the rear seats, front and rear cup holders, along with net hooks in the boot to prevent items rolling around.
With Jaguar being a high-end, premium brand, expect to pay a hefty price for the I-PACE. On-the-road prices for the latest models range from £65,245 for the I-PACE S, £68,845 for the SE and £74,445 for the range-topping HSE version. There is all manner of optional extras that can be introduced, but these will see the final price-tag climb quite steeply so be careful how many boxes you tick.
Our test car, in entry-level S trim, featured a number of options, including 12-way heated, electric memory front seats with two-way manual headrests (£2,450), a black exterior pack (£360), privacy glass (£395) and heated, electric door mirrors (£410). The final cost of our car was £69,305.
However, there are lots of savings to be made by running an EV. For example, with zero carbon emissions, the I-PACE is exempt from Vehicle Excise Duty charges and Congestion Charges and if the car is charged overnight, the electricity tariffs are often lower – it is worth checking with your energy supplier for the best plan.
On the downside though, because as the I-PACE costs more than £40,000 there would be an extra surcharge of £335 for five years beginning 12 months after registration.
The charging cable is tucked neatly away beneath the boot floor and the I-PACE can be charged up to 80 per cent in 40 minutes on a DC 100kW charger; 10 hours on an AC 7kW charger or 12.9 hours to a full charge on an AC 7kW point. New to the latest model is the option to gain 33 miles per hour charge via an 11kW domestic wall box for customers with three-phase supplies or 8.6 hours for a full charge.
Our car was in insurance group 47.
Quality & Reliability
While the I-PACE is still a relative newcomer to the scene, Jaguar has proven to be a reliable manufacturer especially in more recent years. It often sits in the top third of customer satisfaction surveys which is reassuring for new buyers.
The I-PACE features a bespoke chassis and the car was tested to its limits before being launched. In fact, during the rigorous testing process, the I-PACE notched up 1.5 million miles - that’s equivalent to circling the globe 60 times. It underwent in excess of 11,000 hours of rig testing and, with 200 prototypes in operation, was thoroughly put through its paces in Europe, North America and Asia by more than 500 test engineers.
The I-PACE feels solid in its build quality and the interior oozes class and quality. For peace of mind, Jaguar offers a warranty of three years with unlimited mileage as standard with multiple options to extend.
In addition, the battery warranty extends to eight years or 100,000 miles (whichever comes first). This is redeemable in the case of any manufacturing defect or if a Jaguar retailer measures that the battery has dropped below 70 per cent state of health.
Safety & Security
The I-PACE was awarded a maximum five stars when tested for its Euro NCAP safety rating and is packed with safety features and driver aids to help protect occupants, other road users and also help prevent accidents happening in the first place.
The list of safety kit on our test car was most comprehensive with the likes of dynamic stability control, low traction launch, emergency braking, traffic sign recognition with adaptive speed limiter, lane keep assist, a 360-degree surround camera, passive front head restraints, hill launch assist, all-wheel drive and all surface progress control, a rear traffic monitor, clear exit monitor, a driver condition monitor, a tyre pressure monitoring system, plus a full suite of airbags.
In addition, the I-PACE features an Audible Vehicle Alert System to warn pedestrians as the car approaches.
With its impressive range, excellent driving dynamics and high standard of on-board technology, the Jaguar I-PACE is a superb all-rounder for anyone looking to buy a premium quality all-electric SUV that is practical, efficient, stylish and great to drive.
*Terms & conditions
When you choose a Jaguar I-PACE on Jaguar Business Contract Hire, your initial rental in advance will be £4,455 + VAT followed by 48 monthly rentals of £495 +VAT. This is based on 8,000 miles per year and excess mileage will be charged at 20.8p per mile +VAT. At the end of the agreement, you must return the vehicle in good condition to avoid further charges.
Fuel Consumption: N/A. CO2 Emissions: 0 (g/km). EV Range: Up to 292 miles.
The figures provided are as a result of official manufacturer’s tests in accordance with EU legislation with a fully charged battery. For comparison purposes only. Real world figures may differ. Energy consumption and range figures may vary according to factors such as driving styles, environmental conditions, load, wheel fitment, accessories fitted, actual route and battery condition. Range figures are based upon production vehicle over a standardised route.
Business Users only
VAT payable at 20%. Model pictured above (includes optional 22” 5069 alloy wheels and Electronic Air Suspension) from £571 a month + VAT, plus initial rental in advance of £5,138 +VAT.
Based on a 22MY I-PACE EV400 SE standard specification, non-maintained. Excess mileage charged at 20.8p per mile +VAT. Must be returned in good condition to avoid further charges. Contract Hire subject to status. 18+ only. This promotion cannot be used together with other manufacturer's promotions and is subject to availability at participating Retailers only for new vehicles registered by 30 September 2021. Contract Hire is provided by Jaguar Contract Hire, a trading style of Lex Autolease Limited, Heathside Park, Heathside Park Road, Stockport SK3 0RB. Model shown may not reflect 22MY specifications and options. Consult your local Retailer for 22MY specifications.
^Benefit in Kind tax based on a 40% taxpayer 2021/22 tax year.