Jaguar reveals the I-PACE concept: the electric performance SUV

The Jaguar I-PACE Concept is one of the most visually arresting concepts ever produced by Jaguar. Taking full advantage of the packaging freedom offered by electrification, the design and engineering teams took the opportunity to rethink the vehicle’s overall proportions.

The result is an exceptional vehicle that combines an advanced cab-forward design inspired by the C-X75 supercar with the smooth silhouette of a coupe – in a five-seater SUV. The I-PACE Concept embodies the technological advances under its skin – and the Jaguar design team’s belief that consumers are ready for bolder electric vehicle designs.

Ian Callum, Director of Design, said: “The opportunities offered by an electric powertrain are huge. Electric vehicles offer designers much greater freedom, and it is an opportunity we must grasp. This is why the I-PACE Concept is developed on a new architecture which has been designed to optimise electric vehicle performance, aerodynamics and interior space.

“With the I-PACE Concept, the revolution is in the profile, not the design language. The profile is possible because this car is electric. It’s not just that we wanted to create something that was very different from anything else we do: we wanted the design to celebrate the new battery electric technology.”

A vehicle with proportions this dynamic is only possible with a design that consciously exploits every millimetre given by Jaguar’s state-of-the-art electric drive system. Leveraging the technological possibilities of electric driving, the I-PACE Concept introduces big design changes and finds fresh expression for Jaguar’s premium, personal touches and British craftsmanship.

Without an internal combustion engine and transmission tunnel to package, the I-PACE Concept’s design brings the cabin forward, extends the wheelbase and shortens the overhangs. This enables the silhouette to become more aerodynamic and the haunches to develop more powerful proportions. It also enlarges the interior space and improves vehicle dynamics and visibility.

As a result, the I-PACE Concept’s profile has more in common with the C-X75 mid-engine supercar than conventional SUVs. Evidence is clear in the cab-forward proportions, the dynamic heart line, the curve of the front fenders, the powerful proportions of the rear haunches and the large, purposeful wheels. And yet the I-PACE Concept’s overall footprint is as compact as conventional mid-sized SUVs’. The long, 2,990mm wheelbase creates a voluminous interior with a level of rear knee room usually only found in full-size SUVs and luxury saloons.

With its streamlined profile, sweeping lines, large wheels and muscular rear haunches, the I-PACE Concept represents a new generation of electric vehicles. Bringing together hallmarks of the Jaguar brand with new lines, made possible by the I-PACE Concept’s state-of-the-art electric powertrain, creates a dynamic aesthetic that expresses its performance, innovation and style.

The I-PACE Concept exudes muscular performance. The low bonnet, flanked by curving wheel arches, combines sports car aesthetics with an SUV’s presence. A broad, distinctive grille with a hexagonal grid in gloss black retains a key element of Jaguar design DNA while also providing aerodynamic benefits.

The sharp styling of the I-PACE Concept’s rear provides a clear indication of the vehicle’s dynamic potential and efficiency. A slender composite spoiler enhances the vehicle’s sporting character as well as reducing lift at higher speeds without generating drag.

The five-seater I-PACE Concept is a clear statement of Jaguar’s plans for the production model with future-focused design pervading the open, spacious interior. It also showcases the blend of cutting-edge technologies and traditional materials that characterise Jaguar’s vision for electric luxury.

The I-PACE Concept is very much a drivers’ car but the interior has been painstakingly crafted to ensure that all occupants share the sense of being in something special – that’s what being inside a Jaguar is all about. Luxurious, contemporary materials, perfectly executed surfaces and exquisite finishes are found throughout.

Jaguar’s brief for the I-PACE Concept was to create a performance SUV that is spacious, sporty and useable. The cab-forward layout creates unprecedented interior space that is far larger than is possible in vehicles powered by internal combustion.

With no engine bay and a battery pack that sits flat between the axles, the cab-forward design’s long wheelbase and short overhangs enable a footprint of 4,680mm x 1,890mm and a long wheelbase of 2,990mm.

As a result, the I-PACE Concept occupies less road space than a conventional mid-size SUV while offering more rear passenger space than some full-size SUVs and luxury saloons. The I-PACE Concept’s second-row knee room of more than 70mm assures first class comfort for rear seat passengers.

“This is an uncompromised electric vehicle designed from a clean sheet of paper: we developed a new architecture and selected only the best technology available. The I-PACE Concept fully exploits the potential EVs can offer in space utilisation, driving pleasure and performance,” said Dr Wolfgang Ziebart, Technical Design Director, Jaguar Land Rover.

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.

Jaguar has a proud heritage of motorsport success, winning the Le Mans 24 Hours sports car endurance race a remarkable seven times. Through competition, Jaguar has pioneered and evolved new technologies, from disc brakes to aerodynamic features.

The Formula E Championship now offers a proving ground for electric racing and performance engineering. The series takes place on street circuits in the world’s biggest cities using standardised chassis and battery systems but allowing teams to compete with their own electric motors, control units and transmissions.

The championship will accelerate the development of future electric powertrains. Jaguar engineers will ensure those advances feed directly into its road car programmes.

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