We’ve previously reported on the battle between Tesla and Porsche’s new Taycan. The way we see it, no matter who comes out on top, it’s great to see two automakers battle it out for super-EV supremacy. But there will be another high-powered EV for buyers to consider: The Jaguar I-Pace SVR.
The much-awarded I-Pace has had a tough time living up to its initial reception, with a recall and plenty of software problems. Now, most of those issues seem to have subsided and so Jaguar is looking to engage its performance cred into the EV field.
Jaguar Land Rover Special Vehicle Operations honcho Michael van der Sande told Autocar that a Jaguar I-Pace SVR is already on the way. This would be a high performance version of the standard I-Pace. Unfortunately, though it’s in the works, Jaguar is too consumed with hotter versions of more popular models to address a hot I-Pace immediately, he says.
This makes sense when you consider that the 2019 European Car of the Year’s sales amount to about 10% of total Jaguar production. Already, the I-Pace is participating in Formula E with the eTrophy racecar, which actually has less power than the road car. Conversely, the I-Pace SVR will have a lot more output than the production version’s 512 lb-ft of torque.
Currently, the I-Pace will do 0-to-60 mph in 4.5 seconds with a speed cap of 124 mph. Once developed, the I-Pace SVR should be much, much quicker. Whether it will be Porsche Taycan Turbo quick, though, we can’t say.
Jaguar I-Pace Sales
Has the I-Pace been a success for Jaguar? It depends. Sales in the US as of now are averaging around 200 a month with global sales for the first half of 2019 at 9,000. That’s a low figure until you realize that to begin with Jaguar is a low-volume high-end car manufacturer. Jaguar isn’t in business to sell 20,000 of anything in one month.
The only problem is that while they’ve sold 1,300 I-Pace cars this year in the US, there is an inventory of over 1,300 sitting on Jaguar dealer lots. So at a pace of 200 cars a month there is a six month backup of I-Pace EVs.
Much publicized reports of a lazy graphic interface and range far below the advertised 292 miles were dogging sales. Under normal driving conditions with the optional 21-inch wheels and the air or heat turned on, expect a range of around 120 miles.
Competing with the Tesla Model S with 120-mile range under typical driving conditions is not competing at all. There was also a much-publicized brake issue requiring a recall of every I-Pace made. Other issues have plagued the car based on forums.
Will a much hotter I-Pace polish its rather tarnished image? Especially if it were to make some noise at the Nurburgring racetrack the way Tesla and Porsche are doing might just elevate it to the status we’ve come to expect from a Jaguar.
Don’t forget that Mercedes is adapting EQ EV models to increase power tuned by AMG. So, this is just the beginning of the EV wars as manufacturers compete for consumer attention and prestige to break out from the EV mainstream.