Automakers continue to reimagine their own future. On Tuesday, Jaguar/Land Rover (JLR) announced that all Jaguar and Land Rover models will come in “pure electric form” by 2030. The British-based company’s announcement follows similar moves by General Motors, Ford, VW, BMW, and others. The most likely company to embrace fossil fuel-free cars -- Subaru -- resisted the temptation, but it finally gave up the ghost earlier this year.
Land Rover lovers will get first dibs. That brand’s first all-electric variant will arrive in 2024, with the Discovery and Defender models going electric by 2026.
“We are harnessing those ingredients today to reimagine the business, the two brands and the customer experience of tomorrow,” said company CEO, Thierry Bollaré, in an announcement. “The Reimagine strategy allows us to enhance and celebrate that uniqueness like never before. Together, we can design an even more sustainable and positive impact on the world around us.”
The uphill climb
The carmaker’s history for its stylish Jaguars and what Bollaré called the “Britishness” of the Land Rover faces an uphill climb like its peers. Any company betting on electric vehicles will need to convince the public. Many are still unsure about how far their vehicle might go on a single charge, and truck-loving Americans may be loath to give up their gas-guzzling Ford F-150 for something more environmentally sensible.
Jaguar faces that same challenge. The company may have a hard time transitioning models like its much-loved but often-recalled Jaguar F-TYPE to an all-electric version that maintains the feeling and power of a luxury gas-powered model.
While it hasn’t had much ballyhoo, Jaguar’s been in the battery-electric field for a while. Its crossover SUV I-Pace has been available in North America since late 2018. In fact, Google loved the vehicle so much that it selected it for use in its subsidiary Waymo’s autonomous ride-hailing service, placing an order for 20,000 vehicles.
However, the I-Pace ran into an issue with the electrical regenerative brake system. Reports suggested that the system could fail, which increased the risk of a crash and the distance needed to safely stop. The company had no option but to do the right thing and recall the vehicle.