What Car? Electric Car Awards in association with myenergi
Electric Car Awards 2020: Electric luxury SUV
With electric cars now coming in all shapes and sizes – and available to suit every budget – we’ve named the best models in every class. Here we look at the best electric luxury SUV...
WINNER: Electric luxury SUV
Best buy EV400 S List price £65,195 Target Price £63,256 Target PCP £686 per month 0-60mph 4.5sec Top speed 124mph Official range 292 miles CO2 emissions 0g/km
In the electric car world, driver appeal isn’t solely the preserve of performance cars such as the Porsche Taycan. One of the things we like most about the Jaguar I-Pace is that, despite being a heavy luxury SUV, it handles and steers exceptionally well, helping to make it a more entertaining car to drive than its main rivals, the Audi E-tron and Mercedes EQC. Given that electric cars are sometimes accused of feeling quite similar to each other, the fact that the I-Pace stands out in its class for its dynamic prowess is something to be celebrated.
But fine handling isn’t the I-Pace’s only party trick; it’s also scorchingly quick. Its two electric motors pump out a combined 395bhp for a 0-60mph time of just 4.5sec – noticeably nippier than any current version of the E-tron or EQC.
Then there's its impressively long range. In fact, it ranks second equal in our Real Range table with the Kia e-Niro, covering 253 miles on a full charge in real-world driving, whereas the EQC is down around the 200-mile mark and the E-tron is lower still.
Recharging takes about 10 hours with a typical home wallbox, while a 0-80% charge requires about 40 minutes from a 100kW public rapid charger. Unlike the E-tron, though, the I-Pace can’t take full advantage of even faster chargers.
The slight trade-off for its sporty character is that the I-Pace isn’t quite as refined at high speeds as its German rivals, but that’s like saying a steel girder isn’t as hard as a diamond. As with most EVs, it’s wonderfully hushed most of the time, with just a bit more tyre noise intruding than you hear in the E-tron or EQC. The ride is very forgiving and well controlled on the standard suspension, too, so there’s no need to slash out for the optional air setup.
Although the I-Pace isn’t quite as spacious inside as its rivals and its boot isn’t huge, it’s still a very comfy car even for tall occupants, while the quality of the materials is among Jaguar’s best yet. It’s loaded with technology, too, including a digital instrument panel and twin central touchscreens that control the infotainment and many of the secondary functions.
Entry-level S trim provides the same impressive performance and range as the higher-spec models and gives you all of the luxuries you’re likely to want. All in all, given its long range and the fact that it’s competitively priced and better to drive than its main rivals, the I-Pace remains our favourite electric luxury SUV.