Jaguar I-Pace performance, top speed & motor

The Jaguar I-Pace is still one of the best-handling pure-electric cars you can buy, short of the more expensive Porsche Taycan

Overall rating

4.5 out of 5

Electric motor, drive & performance rating

5.0 out of 5

Price
£69,995 - £79,995
Fuel Type:
Electric
0-62mphTop speedDriven wheelsPower
4.8s124mphFour396bhp

The I-Pace established a real benchmark for electric-car driving enjoyment when it launched in 2018 and little has come along to touch it since. There’s a real sense of playfulness in its dialled-in responses and adjustable chassis. It’s by far the most entertaining electrified executive car out there – only the much more expensive, more sportscar-like Porsche Taycan betters it for driver reward.

Jaguar I-Pace electric motor, 0-62mph and acceleration

The Jaguar I-Pace has four-wheel drive courtesy of an electric motor on each axle. It delivers 396bhp and 0-62mph takes 4.8 seconds. Our only big criticism concerns brake feel. The I-Pace has regenerative braking, of course (in fact, you can choose between light or heavy ‘regen’ force), but whichever setting it’s in, the brake feel is short of precision; it can be tricky to stop the car smoothly and precisely. At least the way the I-Pace slows down when you lift off the accelerator is easy to get used to.

Handling

The I-Pace has fairly heavy steering even in the more laid-back driving modes, but it eases up at parking speeds enough to make manoeuvring easy, and if you toggle into Dynamic mode, you can enjoy some of the best handling of any electric car. Sling it into a corner and the weighty steering gives an immediate sense of connection so you have the confidence to make the most of the grip. It’s a precise and surprisingly adjustable car to drive hard, with an edge of delicacy to it that you’d never expect of a two-tonne SUV.

That's all thanks to the two electric motors that shuffle power between the front and rear wheels of the I-Pace, and also to the low-set batteries that are arrayed along the car’s floorpan to keep the centre of gravity low. Our biggest gripe is that the ride is on the firm side, particularly at low speeds, but it doesn’t make the car overly uncomfortable. The optional air suspension is worth considering, as it helps the ride settle at high speed and takes the edge off the thuds from potholes.

The four-wheel drive isn’t there just to make the I-Pace good to drive on a decent country road; Jaguar has also taken some Land Rover know-how to give it some off-road capability. All Surface Progress Control (ASPC) is a bit like cruise control for bad terrain – it’ll keep the I-Pace going over a muddy field and moderate the car’s speed down a stony descent.

The I-Pace is no Land Rover Defender when it comes to off-roading, but it’ll cope easily enough if you regularly negotiate unpaved tracks. Sadly, the I-Pace is only rated to tow lightweight trailers of up to 750kg, so this is not the car for you if you’ve got a horsebox or caravan to tow.

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