There’s a new Land Rover Defender in the works, a new and electrified Jaguar XJ, and a new Range Rover. According to Autocar, there is also an all-electric version of the Range Rover coming, in addition to an all-electric Land Rover Discovery, said to be coming by 2025. Jaguar knows that it must change or die.
Autocar’s report is based on “company documents,” but Autocar being British, and Jaguar being an object of obsession for the British, I have no reason to doubt it. The plans to electrify its lineup make sense, in any case. The publication also says there will be some new tech inside the cars.
Autocar can also reveal the MLA-based models will have a new SOTA (software over the air) capability, with 14 ‘modules’ in the vehicle’s electrical architecture that are connected to the internet.
JLR says the new SOTA set-up will allow it to reduce warranty claims, avoid the need for some recalls, offer predictive servicing and even user-based insurance. Over-the-air feature upgrades for MLA models are also being planned, as well as “in-vehicle rewards and payments”. JLR is hoping to use data generated by real-world use of the new vehicles to inform future model development, too.
A lot of automakers are doing this these days, Tesla most prominently. And it is Tesla who Jaguar have in mind with a lot of these changes. The electric XJ, for example, would compete with the Model S, with the Chinese market in mind, where the Jaguar name (like Buick) still has tons of prestige attached to its name, and less of the baggage.
JLR will be hoping that the XJ steals a march on premium EV rivals, offering a zero-emission luxury vehicle that’s ideal for East Asian megacities. Later on, plug-in petrol-electric versions of the XJ will be launched.
And then there is the new J-Pace, an all-electric crossover that will be bigger than the F-Pace and will probably compete with the Porsche Cayenne, due some time in 2021 and which we first learned about last year. More electrification, more crossover, everything at least hybrid, is Jaguar’s path. And since it is currently bleeding money it knows it needs to stick the landing.