In-depth reviews

Jaguar I-Pace review

The I-Pace was the first electric SUV to match a long range to serious desirability and entertaining handling – and after several years on sale, it remains a top choice

Overall rating

4.5 out of 5

Price
£64,675 - £76,125
Fuel Type:
Electric

Pros

  • Good standard equipment
  • Great handling
  • Striking looks and performance

Cons

  • Suspension is firm
  • Others charge more quickly
  • Disappointing real-world range
Car typeRangeWallbox charge timeRapid charge time
Electric292 miles13hrs 30mins (0-100%, 7.4kW)47mins (10-80%, 100kW)

The Jaguar I-Pace is an electric SUV that targets a similar kind of customer to the Audi e-tron and Mercedes EQC: those who want an upmarket and luxurious family car that runs on electric power only. You could argue that the Tesla Model X fits the bill, too, but that's a lot larger and much more expensive.

The I-Pace is the longstanding British brand's first (and so far, only) fully electric car. It uses a large 90kWh battery to power an electric motor on each axle. That means four-wheel drive, a 396bhp power output and an impressive official driving range of just over 290 miles. In our experience, range is more like 210-220 miles in real-world driving, where factors such as you driving style, route and the ambient temperature play a big part.

We've seen 230 miles on an easy run in good weather, yet low temperatures or a lot of motorway miles can see the total drop to around 200 miles. That's about on par with rivals like the e-tron and EQC mentioned above, but it's more disappointing in the Jaguar, given its promising claimed figure.

The good news is that the I-Pace's rapid-charging capability makes it easy to get a lot of juice into the battery in a relatively short space of time. Topping up at its maximum 100kW speed (which many public chargers are capable of these days) will see the battery go from 10-80% capacity in around 45 minutes. Alternatively, a standard wallbox charger installed at home can charge the I-Pace fully overnight in around 13 hours.

Even the cheapest I-Pace S trim level is well equipped, but most buyers shopping in this price bracket will go for the plusher SE or HSE specs. While the I-Pace is officially and undeniably an SUV, its low roofline, squat nose and tapering windowline make it look more like a sports hatchback or coupe from many angles.

And it has performance to match those looks, with a 0-62mph time of just 4.8 seconds. But it’s the fact that the car delivers playful, involving handling that really sets it apart from rivals. Only the Porsche Taycan handles better (as it should given its price and sports-car aspirations), but the Jaguar certainly outclasses the Tesla Model 3 and Model S for handling panache. It really is special to drive. Ride quality suffers a little in the name of handling, but while the I-Pace feels wooden over sharp potholes, it’s comfortable on most surfaces.

The Jaguar is roomy enough inside for four adults to be comfortable – it’s roughly on par with an Audi Q5 for space and practicality – and there’s a big boot, complete with an underfloor cable-storage area that means you won’t have cable bags taking up space. The dashboard is a big step forward for Jaguar, with a clean, modern look surrounding the standard 10-inch touchscreen, complete with dense-feeling, classy materials and a perceived solidity that surpasses any recent model from the brand.

Insurance could be one of the higher costs when running an I-Pace, but most sporty SUVs with this sort of performance are similarly expensive to cover. Otherwise, the Jaguar will of course be cheaper to run than an equivalent petrol or diesel car, since it costs so much less to plug in than to fill up. It also benefits from very low company-car tax. Safety is good, too; the I-Pace received a five-star Euro NCAP crash-test rating

In summary, the I-Pace set a new standard for electric SUVs when it launched in 2018 and it still one of the class leaders several years later. It’s a sports car, executive fat-cat and eco warrior all in one. For a more detailed look at the car, read on for the rest of our in-depth review...

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