The age of the practical electric car is here, and every auto manufacturer is tripping over its own feet to come up with an all-electric vehicle that can compete in a market that is currently still under the rule of electric giant Tesla. The Jaguar I-Pace is a surprising contender, with its fresh-faced look and fun-to-drive nature. It sports a futuristic exterior and interior, and while it may look like just another funky crossover SUV, this car delivers serious performance, excellent levels of comfort, and an interior to die for. With close to 400 horsepower and over 500 lb-ft of torque on offer, the 2022 Jaguar I-Pace will embarrass a bunch of traditional gas-powered sports cars off the line, while still carrying the groceries and kids. This side of the car market is heating up, especially in the USA, and the I-Pace has to contend with the likes of the Tesla Model X and Audi e-tron Sportback.
The Jaguar I-Pace skipped the 2021 model year and for 2022, the range is reduced from three to a single trim - HSE - which costs about the same as the old base S trim. There are a few extra standard driver-assistance features this year, including rear cross-traffic alert, auto high beams, adaptive cruise control, and blind-spot monitoring. Wireless charging, a complimentary 4G data plan, and a surround-view camera is also now available. A new optional Bright appearance package adds minor exterior styling changes with chrome and gray accents. The infotainment system is overhauled and runs the new Pivi Pro software to make it easier to operate. It also comes with a new feature that shows you where there are charging stations, tells you how far you are from the nearest one, and indicates how long it will take to charge the battery. Last year's 7-kW on-board charger has been replaced with a faster new 11-kW one. Jaguar says this enables you to fully charge a dead battery at home in 8.6 hours, as opposed to 12.6 hours previously. Lastly, the palette of exterior paint colors have been revisited and several new hues have been added.
See trim levels and configurations:
Single Speed Automatic
The I-Pace is a car with two distinct personalities; the one wants to race other cars at any given opportunity and exploit the 512 lb-ft of torque from every traffic light, but on the other hand, it must deliver a civilized driving experience for the majority of owners who will be driving this car with a modicum of responsibility. When it comes to the driving and handling experience, the I-Pace delivers a pleasing combination of dynamic ability and relaxed cruising. The standard active air suspension system melts away low-speed bumps and offers a relaxing driving experience when sitting at cruising speed. In the same breath, the I-Pace can be thrown around a set of corners with surprising glee: it feels agile despite its heavy curb weight, and there's lots of steering feedback. Push too hard and the I-Pace will turn to progressive understeer. One issue we experienced was with the braking system, which felt uneven and grabby.
Most car manufacturers are in a tailspin to get an EV product to market, and as we've seen with the likes of Tesla, this can lead to shortcuts being taken, resulting in issues with panel fitment and interior fit and finish. Jaguar, on the other hand, is well versed in the ways of building good cars; the I-Pace brims with confidence and capability and offers great value for how much it costs - a lot more so this year. We think its crossover SUV body style and design features look great with its large 20-inch wheels, and we are in love with its sleek and stylish interior, which offers more refinement in comparison to the Tesla Model X. On the road, the I-Pace can be comfortable when needed, but also shows a sporty side, which outshines the Audi e-tron - not to mention the fact that it's blisteringly quick. Its charging times have now been improved thanks to the more powerful on-board charger, so if we can just get its range extended by a few miles, this crossover would be leagues ahead of the rest.
Audi has launched a full-frontal electric assault on its competitors, and one of its weapons of choice is the e-tron Sportback, which combines SUV practicality with svelte looks. Under the skin, the e-tron packs a massive punch: there are two asynchronous electric motors in play, with a total power output of 402 hp and 490 lb-ft of torque. The zero to sixty sprint will take around 5.5 seconds to complete. Audi claims a maximum range of 220 miles, which is slightly less than you get from the I-Pace. There's no doubting the fact that the Audi e-tron is a quick car, but on the road, and especially when pushing on, it feels disconnected from the driver, and we will happily say that the I-Pace is the better driver's car. The interior is typically Audi with its clinically precise layout and fantastic build quality. Interior and cargo space is also good. We'd still go with the more entertaining Jaguar, thanks, especially since its price reduction keeps it within $800 of the base e-tron Sportback.
The Model X is Tesla's luxury SUV offering growing in popularity in the US, and features a ton of modern driver assistance tech along with brutal acceleration. Tesla's SUV is powered by a pair of electric motors: the front axle gets an AC permanent magnet synchronous motor while the rear axle gets its own AC induction motor. Together, the two motors produce a combined 670 horsepower in the Long Range model. We were blown away by this SUV's acceleration, which is listed by Tesla as only needing 3.8 seconds to get to 60 mph, as well as having an impressively long 360-mile range when driven with a light foot on a full charge. However, it is much pricier than the Jaguar - to the tune of $30,000. Both the exterior and interior are stylish, and there's also a ton of cargo space in the back. Build quality lags behind the Jaguar, however, and the infotainment system can be somewhat tricky to operate when driving. Overall, the Model X is a very compelling package, and would win this comparison if the build quality was up to scratch. We'd opt for the I-Pace here.
The most popular competitors of 2022 Jaguar I-Pace: