By on June 9, 2018

Jaguar I-Pace Hero

Jaguar’s I-Pace seems to be Tesla’s greatest threat, if pre-orders in Europe (and glowing reviews) are anything to go on. The electric SUV, which arrives in the U.S. later this year, features twin motors and a combined output of 394 horsepower and 512 lb-ft of torque funnelled to all four wheels.

This is the only way to build a sporty electric car, Jaguar claims. Speaking at the model’s recent global launch, Jaguar Land Rover’s head of vehicle development, Wolfgang Zeibart, said the company threw out any ideas for a two-wheel drive version.

“If you really want a lame duck then you can do it,” he said. This mantra applies to future Jaguar electrics, which will almost certainly appear with the I-Pace’s platform underneath.

According to Wheels, Zeibart made sure to slam Tesla as he rhymed off the vehicle’s attributes. Features, it should be noted, that required a dual-motor setup to pull off. These include handling, traction, regenerative braking, wheelbase, and interior volume.

“The Tesla S was a single-motor design initially, and what that means is if you have only one driven axle you cannot put the wheel into this (I-Pace) position,” he said. “You must move it forward as you need load on the driven axle. When it moves forward you reduce the interior space and the available space for the battery. It’s one compromise after the other and therefore we decided two motors – full stop.”

To recoup maximum energy during regenerative braking, you’d want the electric motor mounted in the front, Zeibart said, but that would impact the car’s launch abilities.

“If you accelerate, the rear motor is the better motor,” he said. “If you want to recuperate, the front motor is the one. We can recuperate up to 150 kW, but if you only do it on the rear axle you are limited to about 60 kW. If you recover (only) from the front, any longitudinal force you apply reduces your available side force. This then makes the car unstable.”

The I-Pace’s purpose-built platform is “definitely scaleable,” Zeibart added, meaning we’ll likely see a range of vehicles built off the I-Pace’s bones. Perhaps a flagship sedan will be among those future models?

But back to Tesla, which Zeibart took every opportunity to poke in the eye.

“The Tesla has a disadvantage as the battery cooling is so poor,” he said. “They have round cells that are basically cooled by air and then they have a water plate underneath. Here (I-Pace), the cells are standing on a water plate so the cooling is much better.”

Tesla apparently refutes this assertion, but Zeibart doesn’t seem to care.

“What we have seen on the Nurburgring, the Tesla degrades rather quickly whereas this car runs the full lap,” he said.

When the I-Pace appears on these shores, it will carry a base sticker of $70,495 (after delivery). Food for thought for luxury EV buyers, as that’s $10k less than Tesla’s Model X. All Teslas stand to see their federal tax credit diminish before too long, too, thus widening the price gap between the two rivals.

[Image: Jaguar Land Rover]

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42 Comments on “Single-motor Electric Vehicles? Lame, Says Jaguar...”


  • avatar
    mike978

    Things interesting now as luxury competitors with brand cachet come to market with class competitive or leading EVs.

    • 0 avatar
      mcs

      Surprised they didn’t mention the interior. I haven’t seen the i-pace interior, but compared to an equivalent prices Model 3, I bet there isn’t a contest. I think I read somewhere that the ipace had the CCS-2 ultrafast charging capability, but I’m not sure. I’m still planning on a Porsche Taycan myself. That definitely has CCS-2.

      Oh, and there’s BMW breaking the 400-mile range mark with the i4.

      https://insideevs.com/bmw-i4-electric-range-340-435-miles/

  • avatar
    Fred

    Acura NSX agrees with Jaguar.

  • avatar
    "scarey"

    The real determining factor on whether or not electric cars or hybrids will replace/be competitive with gasoline/diesel-powered cars will be WILL THEY BE AS AFFORDABLE as gas/diesel cars for the general car-buying public ? Building high-priced models for early-adopters is necessary (in one model) to finance the research and development, but the other model is the Henry Ford model- building for the masses and then moving up the marketplace.

    • 0 avatar
      mcs

      I have this theory that EVs will come to the masses once they are perceived as a sign of wealth. ICE will become associated with the poor and older drivers. It’s all about image. You can talk about range, affordability, and charging convenience, but when push comes to shove it’s going to be an image thing driving EV sales.

      Cost reduction is happening quickly. The first big problem was reducing the amount of cobalt in batteries. That seems to have happened already and it happened without a lot of fanfare. Next is the move to solid state and then to metal air. The battery companies keep quiet and its tough to measure real progress in those areas. Although, there was a new Toyota patent filing recently.

      • 0 avatar
        mcs

        Here’s a link related to Tesla battery cost reductions:
        https://electrek.co/2018/06/09/tesla-battery-energy-density-cost-breakthroughs/

        • 0 avatar
          bts

          Another question is if there are enough raw materials available to supply the demand for batteries if electric cars become very popular. There’s different types of battery chemistries of course, but don’t most need a material we know is limited?

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            bts,
            The problem is much of the rarer metals, ie, cobalt are secondary to the primary ores mined.

            If my recollection is good, cobalt is from the tailings in nickel, silver and lead mining.

            So, if base metals aren’t in demand these other metals will become even more expensive.

            There are those who think a “fix” is around the corner with new battery chemistry, but so is fusion;)

          • 0 avatar
            jpolicke

            Protest slogan, 2038: NO WAR FOR COBALT!!

          • 0 avatar
            mcs

            @BigAl: “There are those who think a “fix” is around the corner with new battery chemistry, but so is fusion;)”

            The technology to drastically reduce the amount of cobalt needed for lithium batteries is already in mass production at Panasonic and in cars. Down to 2.8 percent. Korea’s SK Innovations recently started production as well. I think they have cobalt down to 10% from 33%. Other manufacturers have reductions as well.

            It’s not radical new technology. Just refinement of the current technology. Much easier to put into production as improvements are made.

          • 0 avatar
            brandloyalty

            Guess why Cobalt Ontario is in the news.

          • 0 avatar

            There are enough materials in Solar System for anything. All you need to go and get it. Chinese already working on this direction.

  • avatar
    ajla

    Cool stuff. Could they put it in something that looks more like a 2007 XJ and less like a Dodge Caliber?

  • avatar
    Tstag

    I prefer the interior of the I Pace to Tesla’s they have button and don’t have an oversized ipad glaring at you all night long. Electric cars are simpler to build than ICE cars, despite this Tesla dependability seems debatable. Personally I think the Ipace is the best electric car built so far!

  • avatar
    Greg Locock

    “If you recover (only) from the front, any longitudinal force you apply reduces your available side force. This then makes the car unstable.”

    Absolute nonsense. 100% forward brake bias is stable. We sacrifice stability for braking performance by adding rear brakes. Ask Jack.

    • 0 avatar
      "scarey"

      If you have ever applied too much front brake on a motorcycle, you would know that doing a ‘reverse wheelie’ is very unstable.

      • 0 avatar
        Greg Locock

        You are right, excessive front wheel braking on a bike is unstable. Big clue for pedants: Jaguar don’t make motorbikes.

        • 0 avatar
          conundrum

          @ Greg Locock

          It might help if you explained to the masses that you have been a suspension design engineer at Ford Australia in times past. And an automotive engineer for decades. They don’t know about Eng Tips forum either.

          Perhaps their comments would be more circumspect if they knew.

          However, from my point of view as a retired mechanical engineer and hirer and manager of a dozen, your comments have always tended to be unnecessarily laconic.

          Leaving the 99.9% of people not on your plane to work it all out from the few clues you leave is an optimistic strategy at best. People do not have the background or experience to join the dots together you apparently so blithely assume.

    • 0 avatar
      brandloyalty

      Front drive hybrids such as the Escape Hybrid apply the rear brakes a little, for stability, whenever the brake pedal is depressed. Braking with only the front wheels is inherently unstable. Jaguar’s explanation of braking and regeneration considerations makes perfect sense. Their system will enhance mileage by regenerating from both ends.

    • 0 avatar
      markogts

      He is not saying forward wheel braking will cause instability, he says that you lose lateral side force. In other words, forward bias leads to understeer, which is sure stable, but will still lead you out of the curve.

  • avatar
    Carlson Fan

    I’d say Tesla’s biggest threat isn’t Jaguar, but the fact that they don’t know how to manufacture a car. As far as a luxury electric, I’ll wait for a Cadillac. When it comet’s to engineering and manufacturing an EV worth owning, GM seems to do it better than anyone else.

    • 0 avatar
      Greg Locock

      It’s a bit of a TTAC meme, but worth repeating. Mass production of cars is hard. One upon a time we had a mimsy little production line that churned out 50 cars a shift. Say 10 000 a year. It was a very nice place to go and sort out problems. Big brother was churning out 100 000 a year. Not big bikkies, in a worldwide comparison, but the difference in intensity when problem solving was night and day. Musk is aiming at 250 000 per year. He needs good engineers. He pays low wages so gets fanbois and flakes. Que sera sera.

      • 0 avatar
        Carlson Fan

        Yep Greg your right on, manufacturing is hard & your competing in the toughest industry there is. Musk’s biggest mistake and what may be the downfall of Tesla is that he doesn’t understand Tesla needs to be a manufacturing company first and an electric car company second.

    • 0 avatar
      caretnik

      I agree, but this fact is also an advantage. The way Tesla changes its electronics and updates software is miles ahead of the industry. They run on 6-12-18 months design cycles for that instead of 5-6 years. Tesla updates overnight and never gives me any problems, BMW i3 requires a trip to a dealer and sometimes spends a whole day in there to get its 6 or so computers updated right.

      Still, while I like the software-defined nature of Tesla, I would rather drive i3 around town – it is simply nicer and quieter place to be, while being quicker at the traffic light than pretty much anything other than 911 Turbo or Tesla :)

      • 0 avatar
        sportyaccordy

        6-12-18 month design cycles? The Model S is 6 years old. And fixing problems “design cycles”.

        • 0 avatar
          caretnik

          Because they can? And in the established car industry, something like GPS unit on a new 2018 car model would be likely designed around 2012 and stay like that until 2023 or so.

      • 0 avatar
        civicjohn

        @caretnik,

        They have changed the suspension and the rear window and the back seat in the last 60 days of Model 3 production. That’s not an OTA update.

        So how do the fanboys get that updated? I bet it was buried in the click-thru warranty registration that would hold Tesla harmless. I’ll be damned if I buy a car that changes that dramatically in such a short period of time. That’s why they call them “early production” models.

        What the h**l is a “design cycle” to Tesla? A Model 3 is not an accounting app. Try to find parts for the “early production” variant of the Model 3, good luck.

        They recently announced they would have to change out the motherboards on many vehicles. They did upgrade the stopping distance OTA, but why wasn’t that done prior to delivery? “Miles ahead”…that’s a good one, maybe you are talking about their stopping distance.

        Glad to see you try and justify your $60k Model 3, if Musk thinks there is a 500,000 unit demand for $60k cars I’m all in.

  • avatar
    Tstag

    Really Cadillac is behind Jaguar for reliability in the JD power survey!

  • avatar
    markogts

    And two small motors cost less than a big one. And with EVs you don’t need a third differential and transmission shaft. And you can bias F/R traction via software without the need for complicated planetary gearing. And you can optimize the front and rear motors for cruise efficiency vs torque.

    All things pretty well known to the engineers of Tesla “D” models and Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV.

  • avatar
    mcs

    I think the best arrangement of motors on an EV is one at each wheel. The current kings of that arrangement are Rimac. As an auto enthusiast, after the instant torque, the prospect of 4 wheel torque vectoring is the top reason I’m an EV enthusiast. EVs have a huge potential to advance automotive performance to levels not possible with ICE vehicles.

    http://www.rimac-automobili.com/en/press/releases/rimac-all-wheel-torque-vectoring/

    • 0 avatar
      Sub-600

      EVs indeed have huge performance potential, unfortunately your high voltage wet dream will turn into a nightmare when the autopods arrive en masse. What good is instant torque when you’re just sitting in your autopod playing candy crush and taking selfies? The techbois don’t want anyone driving, “performance” will lose all meaning as it pertains to cars. There may be a short overlap window, just hope the autopods keep crashing and killing people.

      • 0 avatar
        mcs

        I have friends that bow hunt despite the availability of guns. There are still people that paint pictures even though they have a perfectly good camera on their cell phone. Lots of my neighbors still have horses. Even with cars, people have horses and it will be the same with drive-your-self cars.

        Yeah, self-drive cars will be more expensive to insure, but there will be people that can afford to do it.

        BTW I’m one of the tech-boys developing this stuff and don;t mind people driving. In fact, its a nice day so the EV stays in the garage and the carbon fiber (clear coated) manual transmission toy from Italy will be rolling out of the garage momentarily.

        • 0 avatar
          civicjohn

          @mcs, wow, what a surprise, no one would have expected that.

          Does that mean you get to take the first autonomous ride on the 405 in rush hour?

          You need to head back to electrek.co, where you can rightly be hailed as a “visionary”.

          • 0 avatar
            Nick_515

            au contraire, mcs very much needs to stay here, civicjohn.

          • 0 avatar
            civicjohn

            @Nick_515, I’ll take your word for it.

            @mcs, my sincere apology. Guess I get a little hot under the collar regarding autonomous vehicles.

  • avatar
    civicjohn

    At least they didn’t tweet out the specifications.

  • avatar
    chopperjamie

    How far have we come in this world when Jaguar is an expert in anything electrical?

    • 0 avatar

      They are Chinese company now and Chinese are experts thanks for stealing technologies from USA. Ford also taught them how to make cars that do not fall apart immediately. Still Jaguar faces uphill battle against established player Tesla is and has to offer lower price.

      • 0 avatar
        peeryog

        No, I don’t think they are Chinese, I think they are owned by Tata , which is Indian, but most of the design work and engineering happens in England. Tata just provide the money they did not have before.

        • 0 avatar

          Probably many engineers are still from India. How I know that – I work in Silicon Valley. BTW I doubt Jaguar develops electrical systems in house, rather outsources to specialists. My friend from Detroit worked at Lear on keyless entry systems for Jaguar and Nissan. He told me he saw lot of Indians in Jaguar HQ when he was there on business trip.

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