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Jaguar Land Rover CEO Speaks The Truth About EVs

Electric Car / 23 Comments

Why are some EVs so expensive?

Electric vehicles are about to go mainstream, evidenced by the likes of the Tesla Model 3, Chevrolet Bolt, Nissan Leaf, and Volkswagen ID.3, though the latter won't be coming to the US. Instead, America will receive an EV crossover from VW, possibly named ID.4 this coming spring. Despite all of these vehicles aimed at non-luxury buyers, the fact of the matter remains: EVs are generally more expensive than their internal combustion counterparts and they will remain so for several more years.

Autocar spoke with Jaguar Land Rover CEO Ralf Speth and he blamed the price of batteries for the higher costs. He believes it'll take another five years for battery prices to drop, and in turn, for EV prices to go down. Another issue Speth mentioned that requires serious attention is charging infrastructure. If there are more available charging stations, then EV drivers will have less range anxiety. In turn, automakers won't have to use such large and expensive batteries.

2019-2020 Jaguar I-Pace Front View Driving via Jaguar Land Rover
2019-2020 Jaguar I-Pace Rear View Driving via Jaguar Land Rover
2019-2020 Jaguar I-Pace Charge Port via Jaguar Land Rover

"I hope the infrastructure is fixed," Speth said. "The price of electric cars is still too high, as we need to do a big range. So, you have a big battery that is needed, as you can't charge the car. If you can charge, we can make the battery smaller and bring the cost down." He's absolutely right. Just imagine if there were as many charging stations as there are gas stations. Range anxiety would be gone in an instant. Above all, Speth is fully convinced EVs are the future and, eventually, the charging infrastructure will expand. "With more demand for chargers, it will come," he said. "It will come later, but it will come."

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2019-2020 Jaguar I-Pace Central Console via Jaguar Land Rover
2019-2020 Jaguar I-Pace Front Seats via Jaguar Land Rover
2019-2020 Jaguar I-Pace Rear Passenger Seats via Jaguar Land Rover

At the moment, Jaguar Land Rover has only one EV, the Jaguar I-Pace, but more are expected in the very near future. One of those is expected to be the next-generation Jaguar XJ flagship luxury sedan. There will be future Land Rovers as well, but the automaker has not yet confirmed which one will be fully electrified first. And yes, they will need to cost less than the I-Pace's nearly $70,000 base price.

2016-2019 Jaguar XJ Sedan Front View via Jaguar Land Rover
2016-2019 Jaguar XJ Sedan Front View Driving via Jaguar Land Rover
Front View Driving via Jaguar Land Rover
Side View Driving via Jaguar Land Rover

Gallery

2016-2019 Jaguar XJ Sedan Front View
2016-2019 Jaguar XJ Sedan Front View Driving
2019-2020 Jaguar I-Pace Charge Port
2019-2020 Jaguar I-Pace Front View Driving
2019-2020 Jaguar I-Pace Rear View Driving
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Photos