Jaguar Unveils 400HP I-Pace Concept EV With Dell And HTC Powering Interactive VR Vehicle Experience

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Tesla isn’t the only automaker that’s staking a claim in the EV market. The American car company is getting some fresh competition from an unlikely source: Jaguar Land Rover (JLV). The British luxury and sports car maker tonight unveiled the segment-busting I-Pace Concept electric vehicle (EV), which looks like Jaguar’s take on SUV “coupes” like the BMW X4 and X6.

The I-Pace -- the company's very first EV -- definitely shares its design language with current Jaguar vehicles, including the XE, F-Type and F-Pace. It’s not an overly aggressive design by any means, but it still manages to avoid the eye-searing blandness (or hideousness) that is often associated with today’s dedicated EVs and hybrids.

Powering the I-Pace are dual electric motors — one at each axle — which together provide 400 horsepower and 516 ft-lbs of torque. Combined with the 90 kWh lithium-ion battery, Jaguar says that the I-Pace can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in just 4 seconds and has a driving range of 310 miles (European NEDC test cycle). If we convert those numbers to align with the U.S. EPA, those numbers fall to a less impressive 220 miles.

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“Electric motors provide immediate response with no lag, no gearshifts and no interruptions,” said Ian Hoban, Jaguar Vehicle Line Director. “Their superior torque delivery compared to internal combustion engines transforms the driving experience.”

Stepping inside the vehicle, you’ll find a minimalistic dashboard that is dominated by a large central touch screen display, a smaller touch screen mounted between the two console dials, and another display that sits directly behind the steering wheel. Jaguar says that the interior features “beautiful, premium materials and an unwavering attention to detail,” which are a hallmark of British luxury cars.

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To help showcase the I-Pace Concept to the press, Jaguar was able to connect members of the press located in both Los Angeles and London so that they could interact with presenters Ian Callum and Ian Hoban during the live unveil. Participants were able to do so in virtual reality with the help of HTC Vive VR headsets and powered by Dell Precision workstations. For those that own an HTC Vive at home, you'll be able to take your own VR tour of the I-Pace using JLV's VR app, which will be available directly on Viewport and Steam.

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"Jaguar Land Rover is renowned for its innovative spirit, and with Vive Business Edition we’re thrilled to be the virtual reality partner to help bring to life their latest launch,” stated Hervé Fontaine, VP for HTC’s Virtual Reality B2B and Business Development. “With the blend of cinematics and Vive’s room-scale VR technology, the I-PACE Concept VR experience offers an incredible level of immersion, and showcases an exciting reimagining of the traditional car launch as we know it.”

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Powering the VR experience for the press were 66 Dell Precision workstations, each with NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 GPUs onboard. In addition, Dell Precision workstations were also used during the design and development phase of the I-Pace Concept, and will likely continue to be used as the vehicle makes its transition to production form. 

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JLV also took full advantage of VR during the development process to help engineers get a better feel for the cabin of the vehicle without having to go through expensive prototyping. Using VR, engineers could measure and experience things like rear headroom/legroom or even sight lines when looking out the windshield and side windows. Not only does this make the development process less costly, but it also reduces the amount of time devoted to making physical mockups.

The I-Pace Concept that you see above foreshadows the eventual production version, which will make its way to customers in 2018. Based on the concept-to-production journey of previous Jaguar concepts, we have the feeling that the final vehicle will look extremely close to the concept.


Tags:  Dell, Jaguar, htc vive, i-pace
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