Within hours of Jaguar unveiling its I-Type 1 Formula E race car, a test mule for the automaker’s first production electric car has been spotted.
The test mule is based on the F-Pace SUV but on closer inspection you’ll notice the grille opening at the front is a different shape and there are no longer air vents at either side of the front bumper. The wheelbase has also been stretched.
Crucially, our photographer confirmed that the vehicle was almost silent as it drove past his camera lens.
The new SUV, which may end being called a J-Pace, is thought to be one of two electric cars Jaguar is planning for the coming years. The other is a sedan.
The SUV will take on Tesla Motors’ [NSDQ:TSLA] Model X as well as Audi’s upcoming Q6 e-tron.
The sedan is thought to be coming with a sleek, coupe-like design, allowing Jaguar’s next XJ to take on a more conventional three-box design. The sedan will rival the Tesla Model S as well as a similar electric sedan planned by Mercedes-Benz and a possible electric version of the next Audi A7.
Crucially, the new SUV and sedan will offer styling that’s distinct from the rest of the Jaguar range, as well as the option of a hybrid powertrain to help boost their appeal.
It was only last year Jaguar together with sister brand Land Rover unveiled a series of technology demonstrators that came in mild hybrid, plug-in hybrid and electric flavors (shown above). The plug-in hybrid and electric demonstrators were based on Range Rover Sport SUVs, while the mild hybrid setup was based on a Range Rover Evoque. However, since then, we’ve heard Jaguar is to focus on electric cars while Land Rover focuses on hybrids.
A debut of Jaguar’s electric SUV should take place in 2018 or the following year. It’s likely we see a concept well before then.
Note, Jaguar is also working on an SUV smaller than the F-Pace. This one has also been spotted in test mule form and is thought to be called the E-Pace.