The I-PACE Concept previews Jaguar’s first-ever electric vehicle. The five-seat production version will be revealed in late 2017 and will hit the road in 2018.
The I-PACE Concept is an electric performance SUV with a cab-forward design that combines a supercar silhouette with sports car performance and five-seater SUV versatility.
It has a new electric vehicle architecture and a predicted range of more than 300 miles on the NEDC cycle (more than 220 miles on the US EPA fuel economy test cycle), helped by optimised aerodynamics which deliver a low drag coefficient of just 0.29. The I-PACE Concept also has a low centre of gravity.
The I-PACE Concept occupies less road space than conventional mid-size SUVs, yet offers more room for passengers and luggage than models in the segment above. Lightweight slimline seats and a ‘Sports Command’ driving position are claimed to provide a sports car-like sense of connection with the road.
Electric motors at the front and rear axles generate a combined output of 400PS and 700Nm of instant torque, delivering sports car acceleration and the all-weather, all-surface benefits of all-wheel drive.
An 80 per cent charge can be achieved in 90 minutes and 100 per cent in just over two hours using 50kW DC charging.
Energy storage in the I-PACE Concept is a liquid-cooled 90kWh lithium-ion battery pack, designed and developed in-house. The battery’s housing is lightweight aluminium and forms an integral part of the I-PACE Concept’s body structure.
The battery uses pouch cells selected for their energy density, superior thermal performance due to lower internal resistance, and because of the design freedom they afford. And, unlike some competing cell formats, they also offer excellent future development potential, especially in terms of energy density – this will enable greater range for a given size of battery, or will deliver similar range to today but from a smaller, lighter pack.
The pack is liquid-cooled using a dedicated two-mode cooling circuit. In moderate ambient temperatures the battery improves efficiency by relying only on a radiator to remove the heat generated by the cells. At higher temperatures a chiller linked to the vehicle’s main air conditioning system provides greater cooling capacity to keep the battery in optimum condition.
Energy efficiency is further enhanced by integrating a state-of-the-art heat pump into the climate control system. The heat pump is far more efficient than conventional electric heaters because it uses energy from the outside air to heat the cabin rather than relying solely on drawing current from the battery. As a result it can increase the I-PACE Concept’s range by up to 50km, even in freezing winter conditions when most needed.
Electric motors at the front and rear axles together deliver 400PS and 700Nm of instant torque. Electric all-wheel drive delivers all-surface, all-weather driveability. Response is immediate and the system provides exceptional control over the front and rear torque distribution, responding immediately to driver inputs, road conditions and vehicle characteristics.
Electric motors provide immediate response with no lag, no gearshifts and no interruptions, with superior torque delivery compared to internal combustion engines. With 700Nm and the traction benefits of all-wheel drive, the I-PACE Concept accelerates from 0-60mph in around four seconds.
The I-PACE Concept’s dynamics and responsiveness are further improved by the battery’s ideal position beneath the floor and between the axles, which lowers the centre of gravity and reduces yaw inertia.
Jaguar Land Rover engineers designed and developed the synchronous, permanent magnet electric motors in-house to achieve the most compact design, greatest efficiency and maximum power density. They have an outer diameter of just 234mm and are only 500mm long.
Rather than the conventional, offset configuration which places the transmission in front of the motor, the I-PACE concept features a more space-efficient concentric layout, which contributes directly to the excellent ground clearance and spacious interior.
By selecting a higher level of regenerative braking in stop-and-go traffic, the driver can drive with a single pedal, with no need to apply the brakes to halt the car.
To ensure drivers can enjoy and safely exploit the I-PACE Concept’s performance in even the worst conditions, the inherent benefits of all-wheel drive are enhanced with Jaguar’s unique state-of-the-art traction technologies, including All Surface Progress Control (ASPC) and Adaptive Surface Response (AdSR).
The Jaguar F-PACE set the class benchmark for its unrivalled balance of ride, handling and refinement and the I-PACE Concept will do the same. The sophisticated suspension design, the benefits of a low centre of gravity and incorporating all of the lessons learnt developing the F-TYPE and F-PACE will set the I-PACE Concept apart from all other electric vehicles.
Mike Cross, Chief Engineer of Vehicle Integrity, Jaguar Land Rover, says: “We proved with the F-PACE that a performance crossover can deliver the agility, connected feel and ride quality you’d expect from a Jaguar. Now we’re going to do the same with the I-PACE Concept: this will be the first electric vehicle developed for enthusiasts who love driving.”
Green Car Guide’s Editor Paul Clarke says: “The Jaguar I-PACE Concept looks set to be one of the most significant cars of the coming years. It looks fantastic, it’s likely to drive well, it’s zero emission, and it’s made in the UK. We can’t wait to try one.”