2019 Jaguar I-PACE Jumps Straight in, Drag Races Two Tesla Model X

2019 Jaguar I-PACE vs. Tesla Model X 1 photo
Photo: YouTube screenshot
For cars with internal combustion engines - what we now refer to as "regular cars" - the ultimate benchmark regarding performance is how fast they go around the Nordschleife.
The famous German circuit is where most manufacturers bring their new models for testing, and if they think they can pull a competitive time, they'll also make sure they let everyone know about it. Just look at what happened with the front-wheel-drive record that's currently held by the Honda Civic Typer R, but probably not for long.

For EVs, though, that's not entirely relevant. With its 12.9 miles-long (20. km) track, the battery-powered vehicles can't do too many laps before they need a recharge, plus the current crop is known for not being able to maintain a high level of performance for too long - something Porsche looks to change with the Mission E.

However, what EVs have is off-the-line acceleration, which is why drag racing them has pretty much become the norm. Here, Tesla has been sitting pretty lonely at the top after its Performance models established themselves as forces to be reckoned with. Even the Model X SUV is quick enough to give headaches to much sportier cars on the shorter 1/8- and 1/4-mile races.

Jaguar is fresh off launching its first ever 100% electric vehicle, the I-PACE crossover. The car is considerably smaller than the X and has a much sexier design (wait, comparing it to Tesla's SUV doesn't do it justice because the British model would still look gorgeous next to any other car), but since they are now the only two battery-powered vehicles of their type, a comparison is unavoidable.

That's what Jaguar must have thought when it put together this clip. The fact it's produced by the carmaker - and it's pretty badly acted, which doesn't leave any doubt over the fact it was scripted - does cast a shadow of doubt over its credibility, but we'll get to that in a second.

The idea is to have the two EVs accelerate to 60 mph from a standstill and then immediately come to a complete stop. The one that does it over a shorter distance wins. Simple. Except the test isn't exactly fair: as we've said, the Model X is larger and heavier, putting it at a disadvantage.

To make matters worse, they also chose the 75D version, which is the base model of the X range. Sure enough, the I-PACE stops one car length clean off the Tesla, winning the first round. Tony Kanaan, the former Indy 500 winner driving the Tesla says he needs a faster car, such as the P100D. Mitch Evans, the Panasonic Jaguar Racing Formula E driver in the I-PACE points out he could almost get two electric Jaguars for the price of that model.

Which is probably why they very discreetly settle for a 100D instead, leaving anyone who didn't pay enough attention to believe they are watching the I-PACE beat Tesla's top of the line model. Because, you guessed it, the Jaguar wins this second bout as well.

Far from us to suggest nobody will ever be able to make an electric SUV/crossover that's quicker than the Model X, but there are a few things that make this test a bit questionable. The first is the fact it's organized by one of the parties, and the second is that P100D/100D confusion that certainly wasn't an accident. Jaguar probably thinks it's being coy, but the lie will only hold until the first independently-organized drag race, and we get a feeling they're not very far.

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About the author: Vlad Mitrache
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"Boy meets car, boy loves car, boy gets journalism degree and starts job writing and editing at a car magazine" - 5/5. (Vlad Mitrache if he was a movie)
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