Jaguar electrifies LA with I-Pace Concept

Jaguar I-Pace Concept. (Sinclair Broadcast Group/Jill Ciminillo)

LOS ANGELES (SBG) - When an automaker launches a concept, the jaded among us assume that it will never see the light of day.

Especially when that concept vehicle touts 220 miles of EV range, next-gen infotainment technology and a sleek, cool design.

Which is what makes the Jaguar I-Pace Concept both a surprise and an aberration.

In a stunning visual display, the Jaguar team revealed this new electric concept at Milk Studios prior to the official media days of the Los Angeles Auto Show using virtual reality.

Kitted out in goggles and headphones and armed with a VR wand, journalists in LA and Britain were simultaneously able to tap and turn the virtual I-Pace to check out the interior and exterior, as well as take a turn sitting in the driver’s seat.

The virtual presentation was packed with details about this thinly veiled production vehicle. Of note:

  • I-Pace will come equipped with a liquid-cooled 90 kWh lithium-ion battery pack.
  • Using DC fast charging, I-Pace will achieve an 80-percent charge in 90 minutes and 100-percent charge in two hours.
  • Targeted EV range will be 220 miles.
  • Drag coefficient is 0.29.
  • The EV SUV will seat five passengers.
  • The cargo area will have a volume of 19 cubic feet.
  • The electric motors will deliver 400 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque.
  • Zero-to-60 mph will be about four seconds.

Luckily for those of us in LA, after we doffed our goggles, the actual I-Pace Concept went from virtual to reality, and pictures do not do this concept justice.

You can see the distinctive Jaguar lines from the slope of the roof to the details on the front and rear fascia. There is a hint of F-Pace definitely, but I saw a lot of the X-Type here as well. It’s edgy enough that you realize you’re looking at something special, but it’s familiar enough that it’s not completely off the rails.

The amazing attention to detail tells you that the I-Pace will make the transition from concept to production in fast order.

Well, that and the fact that Jaguar told us straight out that the I-Pace is meant for production as Jaguar’s first all-electric vehicle.

“This isn’t just a concept,” said Ian Callum, director of design for Jaguar. “It is a preview of a five-seat production car that will be on the road in 2018.”

What’s more, Jaguar execs on hand at the reveal assured me that the production vehicle won’t differ greatly from the concept on display at the LA Auto Show.

The seating will likely be different, and the lighting inside the taillights might change, but by all accounts, the exterior shape and minimalist interior of the concept is what you will see in the production vehicle.

Another keeper: The instrument panel and next-gen touchscreen interface on the center stack. In fact, I heard a rumor that this system will make its debut in another vehicle before the I-Pace hits the streets in 2018.

Though there was no mention of Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, Jaguar does say that apps from both iOS and Android smartphones will be available through the main touchscreen using InControl Apps.

The production version of the I-Pace will be revealed in 2017, which is just around the corner.

Watch your six, Tesla. Jaguar has you clear in its sights.


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