New BMW iX3 vs Jaguar I-Pace: costs

The new BMW iX3 electric SUV treads a less radical path than its proven Jaguar I-Pace rival, but is it the way to go?...

BMW iX3 2021 boot open

Buying and owning

Costs, equipment, reliability, safety and security

Both cars come with a lead that you can stick in a conventional three-pin socket at home, plus a Type 2 cable for home wallboxes and certain public chargers. We’d keep the former option for emergencies only; even on a 7kW charger, a 0-100% charge of the iX3’s battery will take 11hr 30min, versus 12hr 45min for the I-Pace’s bigger battery. As for cost, a full charge will set you back £11.20 for the iX3 and £12.60 for the I-Pace, based on a regular single-rate tariff.

Both cars are compatible with CCS public rapid chargers as standard; the I-Pace can take a maximum of 100kW and the iX3 150kW. In simple terms, that means the I-Pace takes around 44 minutes to get from 10-80% at its maximum charge rate, while the iX3 can take as little as 27 minutes.

Jaguar I-Pace 2021 boot open

Because both cars cost more than £35,000, neither is eligible for a government grant. After discounts, the I-Pace costs £760 more to buy outright than the iX3, and if you tot up servicing, insurance and electricity, it’ll cost a private buyer around £2250 more over three years and 36,000 miles. That’s mainly because the I-Pace isn’t predicted to hold onto its value quite as well as the iX3, and this is reflected in the PCP finance costs; the iX3’s £745 monthly figure tidily undercuts the I-Pace’s £923 (based on a 36-month term at 10,000 miles per year, with a £6250 deposit). Little separates the two cars for company car tax; both currently sit in the 1% tax bracket (rising to 2% from April 2022).

Despite its higher price, the I-Pace isn’t as well equipped as the iX3; it misses out on leather seats, adaptive cruise control, metallic paint and an electric tailgate, and its price soon creeps towards £70,000 if you add all those as options. Fortunately, you still get basic cruise control, climate control and plenty of other niceties to discourage you from raiding the options list too hard.

BMW iX3 vs Jaguar I-Pace costs

The I-Pace ranked mid-table in the electric car category of the latest What Car? Reliability Survey, beating the Tesla Model S (but not the class-leading Model 3). The iX3 is far too new to have featured in the survey, but BMW came ninth overall out of 31 manufacturers, against Jaguar’s 21st-place finish.

Both cars have automatic emergency braking and lane-keeping assistance. The iX3 adds blindspot monitoring; this comes in a £1350 package on the I-Pace S, along with adaptive cruise control. The I-Pace carries a five-star Euro NCAP safety rating; it provides good but not outstanding protection from injury. The iX3 is yet to be tested.

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