- Powerful acceleration and perfectly balanced
- High-end cabin and quality technology
- Spacious interior and plenty of boot room
- Poor visibility through narrow, sloping rear window
- Range drops like a stone at 70mph
- Expensive to buy, especially with options
If you ever thought electric vehicles were a little bit on the bland side when it comes to styling, then check out the stunning Jaguar I-Pace for a reality check. Okay, so it’s certainly not cheap with a starting price just a fiver shy of £70k, but this is a premium car that’s packed to bursting with tech and delivers a performance that matches the dynamic design.
This year, the I-Pace underwent a subtle makeover offering a more distinctive design, along with some new paint colours to choose from.
And customers can select from trim levels called R-Dynamic S, R-Dynamic SE Black, R-Dynamic HSE Black, along with a UK-only new 400 SPORT derivative. We opted for the high-end R-Dynamic HSE Black for our week behind the wheel.
The Jaguar I-Pace is a five-door family SUV that looks drop dead gorgeous when viewed from any angle. And the design team have been busy tweaking things for a 2023 mild refresh.
The front ‘shield’ grille is now smooth and in attractive Atlas Grey rather than the black patterned styling on the outgoing car. And this is further enhanced by the new black and silver badge in the grille.
The front bumper and lower door finishers, along with the rear diffuser are now body-coloured instead of gloss black and there is a discreet tailgate spoiler. All the wheels across the line-up are now diamond turned and customers can specify different designs and sizes.
Our car featured a black contrast roof as an optional extra that added £520 to the cost, along with flush door handles, sweeping light clusters with signature daytime running lights, black mirror caps and privacy glass.
Move inside and you are greeted with a premium, upmarket and very high-end cabin boasting an elegant design and featuring the finest fixtures and fittings throughout.
The powered seats can be heated or cooled and have memory settings, while the steering wheel offers plenty of adjustment and can also be warmed to fend off the winter chill.
The main focal point is Jaguar’s latest Pivi Pro infotainment touchscreen offering access to the many on-board features. These include full navigation, smartphone connectivity, integrated Alexa voice control, a pitch perfect Meridian sound system, Bluetooth and much more.
There are ‘proper’ dials for the climate control settings with a separate mini screen, plus a configurable driver display for vital data such as speed, navigational directions and driving range. A head-up display is also a handy addition.
On The Road
Handling & Performance
Powering the Jaguar I-Pace is a 90kWh battery with two electric motors – one on each axle – for all wheel drive through a single-speed automatic transmission system.
With 400PS and 696Nm of torque, this powerhouse of a car can sprint to 62mph from a standing start in just 4.8 seconds and tops out at 124mph. Not bad for a vehicle weighing in at 2.1 tonnes.
Jaguar claims the I-Pace will do a WLTP-tested 292 miles between charges although, as is the case with all EVs, that range will plummet quickly if driven quite hard over a long distance of motorway miles.
It’s blisteringly quick off the mark though and that power is relentless making overtaking slower-moving vehicles an easy task. And with its low centre of gravity, thanks to the battery pack being located beneath the floor, the I-Pace is beautifully balanced when pushed on through twisting country lanes.
Then in busier town centres, the perfectly weighted steering, along with a wealth of cameras and sensors make parking a simple process. The only downside is the poor rearview mirror visibility which is due to the narrow, sloping and small back window.
There are drive modes called Eco, Comfort and Dynamic that completely change the dynamics of the car with Dynamic sharpening up everything for an edge-of-the-seat experience. Then you simply switch back across to Eco to recoup some range when the fun and games have worn thin.
In addition, an AdSR setting which stands for Advance Surface Response which, is recommended in more testing driving conditions such as snow, ice and heavy rain.
Refinement levels are excellent with occupants protected from outside noise and the suspension set-up does wonders smoothing out any road undulations along the way.
Space & Practicality
With its SUV styling, there is bundles of room inside the I-Pace’s spacious cabin. A couple of six-footers can stretch out up front, while there’s ample room for another couple behind them too. Head, leg and elbow space impresses, but they may feel a little claustrophobic due to the small-ish windows. However, light floods through the panoramic sunroof giving the cabin a bright and airy feel,
The I-Pace has a strong road presence with all-round dynamic styling. It stretches 4,682mm in length, is 2,011mm wide (with mirrors folded), 2,139mm with mirrors out, 1,566mm tall and has a wheelbase of 2,990mm.
The boot is accessed via a powered and gesture-activated tailgate and has a wide, square opening to make carrying heavy or awkwardly-shaped items much simpler. It can accommodate 656 litres of luggage, a limit that increases to a generous 1,453 litres with the split-folding rear seats dropped flat. There is also an area beneath the boot floor to store the charging cables safely away.
And elsewhere, there are numerous handy compartments scattered throughout the cabin, including a locking and cooled glovebox, a deep cubby bin, door pockets with space for a bottle, a wireless charging pad, front and rear cup holders, seat back nets and some practically-sized trays.
Charging the car to 100 per cent via a standard 7kW home wallbox takes 12 hours, 45 minutes, but fast charging is also an option and this takes about 45 minutes to 80 per cent. A 100kW charger can add 78 miles of range in just 15 minutes. And charging times can be pre-programmed to take full advantage of any lower-energy tariffs such as overnight.
The vehicle can tow a trailer weighing up to 750kg and also boasts the option to raise the vehicle’s ground clearance, along with the added reassurance of 4WD for driving on more challenging terrain.
The Jaguar I-Pace is available in trim grades called R-Dynamic S (£69,995), R-Dynamic SE Black (£73,495), R-Dynamic HSE Black (£77,495) and the 400 SPORT version which is new and only available in the UK costing £79,995.
Our R-Dynamic HSE Black test car also featured a number of optional extras that saw the final price climb to £83,775.
These included a Dynamic Pack, costing £3,300, that added Jaguar Drive Control with Adaptive Surface response, Electronic Air Suspension, Active Suspension with Active Dynamics, a tailgate spoiler and upgraded 22-inch gloss black alloy wheels. Four-zone climate control cost an extra £630, while the cooled and lockable glovebox was a £100 option.
Further add-ons included specialist paintwork, a black contrast roof, along with wi-fi enabling with data plan (£440), a secure tracker with 36-month subscription (£340) and a power gestured tailgate for hands-free opening which is great if approaching the car laden down with shopping bags.
With zero carbon emissions, I-Pace owners benefit from numerous Government-led incentives, such as free road tax, being exempt from Congestion Charge and Ultra Low Emission Zone fees and there is no penalty for having a car costing in excess of £40k as is the case with ICE vehicles.
However, on the downside, the Government has announced these financial incentives will all be changing in 2025.
But for company car drivers, it has an excellent Benefit in Kind tax rating of just two per cent and the car, as tested, sits in insurance group 50.
Since its debut back in 2019, the Jaguar I-Pace has scooped more than 90 global awards, including the coveted 2019 World Car of the Year title.
The latest 2023 model gains some subtle design changes, along with the launch of a new 400 SPORT model that is only sold here in the UK.
With its strikingly good looks, wealth of high-end technology, great practicality and very acceptable driving range, this is a most impressive all-rounder.
Admittedly, it’s not cheap, but when you also factor in the superb handling, it’s certainly worth exploring if you fancy a high-end, premium car on your driveway that could make you the envy of the neighbourhood.