Jaguar Australia is determined to plough ahead with its all-electric, all-wheel-driven I-Pace small SUV, no matter how little support EVs are receiving from Australian governments, and will have cars on sale here by the end of next year.
Jaguar Land Rover boss Matthew Wiesner admits it’s disappointing that local authorities seem determined not to follow world’s best practice by providing either cash-back incentives, tax discounts or registration fee reductions for zero-emission vehicles, but says he intends to put the car on sale in 2018, regardless.
Aside from Tesla sales, which are hard to measure because the company doesn’t release them, EV sales have never exactly set the world on fire (even less so in Australia), but Jaguar believes the I-Pace will be different. And, even if it’s not, the halo value of this technological tour de force is too great to miss out on.
“We’ll be selling the I-Pace here, definitely, no matter what the government does or doesn’t do, because we have to,” Wiesner says.
“Our competitors are going to do it and we’re going to do it. Because the simple fact is, this is the future. This form of propulsion is the way the world is going to go, we know that, and we need to be there in that market.”
Jaguar Australia says there has been plenty of curiosity from its customers locally already, and that the massive success of the F-Pace suggests the size of the car will be an attraction on its own.