Jaguar Land Rover has been a tad slow to wake up to the reality of electric vehicles. It only unveiled the I-Pace concept, its first electric car, last year — but from 2020, it has announced that every single new JLR vehicle will offer an electric power train. Now, if that isn’t embracing the EV future then we don’t know what is.
The company revealed the news — two months after Volvo pledged to do the same — at its inaugural Tech Fest, a series of debates and a free public exhibition about the future of mobility, in London.
Dr Ralf Speth, Jaguar Land Rover chief executive officer, said, “Every new Jaguar Land Rover model line will be electrified from 2020, giving our customers even more choice. We will introduce a portfolio of electrified products across our model range, embracing fully electric, plug-in hybrid and mild hybrid vehicles. Our first fully electric performance SUV, the Jaguar I-Pace, goes on sale next year.”
At the festival, JLR revealed a classic Sixties E-type concept which had been retrofitted with an electric drive train. Called the “E-type Zero”, the restored 1968 Series 1.5 Roadster packed a 220kW electric system and its lithium-ion battery pack was the same dimensions as the original XK six-cylinder engine used in the car. The electric powertrain is said to be potent enough to propel the Jag from 0-100kph in just 5.5 seconds.
The I-Pace will have a range of 500km which will put it on a par with Tesla and ahead of cheaper options such as the new Nissan Leaf.
But what of the Future-Type — a vision for the car of 2040 and beyond? It’ll be a fully autonomous virtual concept that explores mobility for the connected world of tomorrow, where vehicles could be shared not owned.
“Future-Type offers an insight into the potential for driving and car ownership in the future,” said Jaguar design boss Ian Callum. “It’s part of our vision for how a luxury car brand could continue to be desirable, in a more digital and autonomous age.”