Jaguar’s New E-Pace Compact SUV Will Lead Global Sales Drive.
“I wonder how many people will order the “E” designation and be surprised to find they’ve ordered an evil gasoline powered machine not a clean green one”
British luxury brand Jaguar unveiled its new compact SUV, the E-Pace, filling in a glaring gap in its model lineup and which should help propel sales to new highs.
Jaguar, owned with its sibling Land Rover by Tata Motors of India, saw its lineup of sports sedans and sports cars left languishing in the face of the rise and rise of the SUV. But last year it launched the big F-Pace, which competes with the BMW X5, Audi Q7 and Porsche Cayenne. The smaller E-Pace will have to fight off the likes of the BMW X1, Audi Q3 and Q5 and upcoming Volvo XC-60.
The Jaguar E-Pace features standard all-wheel drive technology as well as the usual suite of connected technology and convenience features.
The name of the new compact SUV is bound to cause confusion when Jaguar launches its first battery only car next called the I-Pace. I wonder how many people will order the “E” designation and be surprised to find they’ve ordered an evil gasoline powered machine not a clean green one.
Jaguar said the E-Pace features, in Europe at least, gasoline and diesel engines ranging from 150 hp to a range-topping 300 hp. The hottest one will bound from zero to 60 mph in 5.9 seconds, and on to a maximum 155 mph on unlimited German highways.
In the U.S., Jaguar said prices for what it called a compact, performance new E-Pace, will start at $38,600 when it goes on sale early next year.
Automotive consultants IHS Markit said the E-Pace will accelerate Jaguar sales in particular and JLR’s generally.
“IHS Markit currently anticipates that this model will see its global sales peak at around 61,500 during 2019, at which point we see Jaguar’s overall volumes standing at 270,800. This is a far cry from the lows of under 50,000 that it sold globally in 2011 and the 147,300 that it sold last year. We also see JLR’s global sales reaching 765,700 during 2019, up from around 589,200 in 2016,” IHS analyst Ian Fletcher said.
In June, Dave Sullivan, Detroit Based analyst at the AutoPacific automotive sales forecaster, Sullivan said in the U.S., Jaguar is still what he calls a challenger brand sitting in the third tier of the premium sector. BMW, Mercedes and Lexus are at the top, the next tier includes the likes of Cadillac, Infiniti, Lincoln and Acura, and then there’s Jaguar. For Jaguar to compete effectively in the U.S. it now needs an SUV bigger than the F-Pace.
Bigger than F-Pace
Talking about Jaguar’s prospects for the next 5 years, Sullivan said its top of the range XJ is now looking a bit old compared with the latest products like the BMW 7 Series and Mercedes S class. Sullivan said the F-Pace has done very well for Jaguar and came at just the right time, but to make progress in the U.S. it must come up with a bigger SUV with three rows of seats.
“Jaguar is really going to need to come up with some marketing to reach buyers in ways they have not done before. They are going after buyers now that are in a very different price point than they have dealt with since the X-Type (and we know what a disaster that was),” Sullivan said.
The X-type Jaguar was a small sedan based on previous owner Ford Motor’s mass market Mondeo. It failed to be a big seller, not least because it was referred to as a Jaguar based on a Ford.
AutoPacific expects U.S. sales of the E-Pace to reach 5,500 in 2018, and then zoom on to 20,000 by 2022. Overall Jaguar sales should accelerate to 47,700 in 2017 from 31,300 in 2016 and power on to 91,900 by 2022.
Made in Austria
Production of the E-Pace will start at a plant in Graz, Austria, but may be made in other locations when volume starts to build.