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Jaguar I-Pace hands-on – Real-world range and charging times

The all-electric Jaguar I-Pace is a viable car for early adopters in South Africa as, even without a home charger, you can still complete your daily chores with plenty of range to spare.

This Jaguar is the only electric vehicle (EV) I have driven for longer than 30 minutes, and during the first day or two, I too had range anxiety creeping up in the back of my mind.

As such, from the first charge I kept a detailed logbook of how far I drove and how long the charging cycles took, and by the end of the review period I was confident enough in Jaguar’s EV that I would even consider it as a replacement to my diesel sedan, if I had R2,029,800 to spend.

Charging challenges

Jaguar dropped off the I-Pace on a Friday morning with around 90% left on the battery, and I had my fun with it before recording any consumption figures as the initial excitement of driving an EV is rather tough on its range.

On Saturday afternoon after well over 150km covered, it was time to put the first public charger to test.

Initially, I drove to the nearest Jaguar-Land Rover dealership, which happens to be close to the gym, with a plan of letting the EV power up while I do the same.

The dealership was closed and I was informed by the security guard that no charging may take place outside of trading hours even though we were standing next to a 22kW charger in the outside parking lot that brightly displayed “Ready”.

GridCars’ charging map came to the rescue and showed that another 22kW plug was right across the road in the parking lot of a major shopping mall.

I located the unit and a Volvo XC90 T8 was already filling up on the one side. The other side was unoccupied but the RFID sensor that scans the payment card was smashed and it was therefore unusable.

GridCars then showed a Jaguar Powerway charger located in an adjacent shopping centre that I hadn’t tried before.

Here, I plugged in the I-Pace, the card registered instantly, and the EV was charging.

The Jaguar-branded plug was the most powerful charger in my area, putting out a healthy 60kW DC current that took the I-Pace from 19% to 87% in one hour and 29 minutes, effectively adding 276km of range.

But now the Jaguar was charging at a location that wasn’t very close to where I first wanted to be, and I had to decide between walking the few kilometres to the gym or going to a restaurant while waiting for the car to charge, which wasn’t a tough choice, but not one I planned on having to make.

After this, I only used the 2.4kW charging cable that is compatible with standard wall plugs from Sunday through Tuesday evenings to keep the range at a reasonable level, and I was surprised at just how well even this minuscule current can keep the EV charged up and ready for my everyday commutes, which are never under 50km.

The keen eye might notice that from Saturday to Sunday I covered 173km while the range went down by 273km. This was when the Jaguar handled four passengers, climate control, heated seats, and mainly long stretches of highway from morning to afternoon.

AutoTrader has before concluded that this is when an EV is at its least efficient – on the open road.

The table below details every time I charged the Jaguar I-Pace EV400 AWD S Black with its 90kWh battery pack.

Time Odometer Plug in (Range) Current Time elapsed Plug out (Range)
Saturday 16:22 2,503km 19% (66km) 60kW DC 01h29m 87% (342km)
Sunday 18:16 2,676km 21% (69km) 2.4kW AC 12h09m 51% (174km)
Monday 18:03 2,726km 38% (130km) 2.4kW AC 12h20m 66% (245km)
Tuesday 18:09 2,789km 48% (165km) 2.4kW AC 12h13m 75% (288km)

EVs in South Africa

For the unprepared, like myself, spending a few days with an EV in South Africa can be nerve-wracking as you’re not always assured where your next charge will come from.

However, bear in mind that as EV ownership goes, I was in the worst-case scenario as I had no home charger installed and have never used any public charging infrastructure before the moment where I was stuck with an electric Jaguar on 19%.

For the average owner, they can charge their vehicles from 0-100% in 12 hours on the 7.4kW wallbox that comes with the purchase of an I-Pace, perfect for starting every morning with over 400km in the tank.

I wouldn’t advise you use an EV for the long road just yet, but for the majority of motorists’ everyday needs 400km is plenty, and they will never again have to squeeze in an emergency trip to the petrol station while they’re already running late.

The powerful (294kW/696Nm) electrical underpinnings in this Jaguar will also assure that you get to your destination faster than with most other cars.

As with any other vehicle, though, the I-Pace depletes range quite quickly when it’s fully loaded and systems like climate control and seat heating are in use, but as my experience has shown, it can also be highly efficient and with regenerative braking, it can even add bits of range while you drive.

Another benefit of EVs is that, had I not made an effort to look for the charging stations, I probably would not have stumbled across the only – as far as we know – Tesla Model 3 in the country.

Jaguar I-Pace EV400 AWD S Black


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