Jaguar Recalls Early I-Pace SUVs Over Battery Fire Risk, Fix Under Development

Jaguar I-Pace 9 photos
Photo: Jeep / edited
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Currently facing an existential crisis that could see Jaguar follow in the footsteps of Chinese-owned MG, the Leaping Cat of Coventry has issued yet another safety recall concerning the marque's first – and thus far only – electric vehicle. According to documents filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, just under 260 examples of the 2019 model year I-Pace feature batteries with a greater propensity for short circuits in the cells.
The document attached below lists no fewer than 10 part numbers for the battery pack assembly, with all of them produced by LG Energy Solution's Polish subsidiary. Suspect batteries were produced between March 1, 2018 and May 31, 2018. As for the cars, those rolled off Magna Steyr's assembly line between June 6, 2018 and October 31, 2018.

Jaguar Land Rover determined that battery fire risk greatly increases when the state of charge is greater than 85 percent. JLR is currently developing a fix for this condition, but in the meantime, owners are urged to charge their vehicles no more than 75 percent. Of course, owners are further urged to park away from structures and to the charge outside.

Jaguar Land Rover's North American division is aware of 61 field reports and claims related to the recall condition, with said reports and claims received from August 23, 201 through February 16, 2024. Indeed, that's almost a month ago. The planned owner notification date is April 26, whereas Jaguar dealers will be informed about said condition – and the lack of a fix – no later than March 21.

The LG traction battery is made up of 432 pouch cells arranged in 36 modules of 12 cells each. The battery management software was developed by Jaguar Land Rover instead of the South Korean high-voltage battery supplier. The Brits originally advertised the I-pace with a WLTP driving range of 480 kilometers or 298 miles. Care to guess how the 2024 model fares? That would be 470 kilometers or 292 miles in the WLTP, whereas the EPA couldn't give it more than 246 miles or 396 kilometers.

Jaguar I\-Pace
Photo: Jaguar
It goes without saying that Jaguar's first electric vehicle is a poor choice over the likes of the Hyundai Ioniq 5 or Tesla Model Y, although the cab-forward aesthetic inspired by the C-X75 remains bite-the-back-of-your-hand beautiful. Jaguar did work its magic on the infotainment of the I-Pace, but it failed to make worthwhile improvements in terms of range and performance.

The I-Pace can also be described as being a flop, with Jaguar selling a little over 60,000 units worldwide from 2018 through the end of last year. By comparison, Tesla delivered 1,739,707 units of the Model 3 and Model Y in 2023, of which the Model Y is estimated with 1.23 million deliveries.

The worst is yet to come, though, because series production of all current models will grind to a halt in June 2024. Jaguar waxed lyrical about its 2025 rebirth as an all-electric luxury brand, yet Jaguar may have bluffed on that. With Jaguar currently reducing its dealership network footprint and the My Jaguar portal closing March 25, it certainly appears that Jaguar is facing immense pressure.

From who? Parent company Tata Motors from India, which is in the middle of restructuring. The multinational automotive company produces commercial vehicles and passenger vehicles under its own name, but also controls Jaguar Land Rover. With Land Rover doing so much better than Jaguar sales-wise, Tata is rumored to first spin-off and then ultimately sell Jaguar to whoever bids the most.
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 Download: Jaguar I-Pace battery recall (March 2024) (PDF)

About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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