Jaguar I-Pace has a bit more than a touch of luxuryJack Gleeson 25 Aug 2022
By Seán Creedon
IN DECEMBER 2019 Richard Bruton, who was then our Climate Action Minister, encouraged people thinking of buying a new car in 2020 to think electric.
He said: “I think there are many pioneers that want to purchase electric vehicles now and I encourage them. We will ensure there is a charging network to support them.’’
Then Covid-19 struck and everything was delayed, including the installation of electric car charge points around the country.
The big one in Mayfield near Monasterevin is probably the best known and we have also seen charge points installed at new shopping centres around the country, but really you will need a home charge point if you are thinking of going electric.
Last year Leo Varadkar eased worries that people might have to purchase an electric car by 2030 when he said that nobody will be forced to buy an electric car.
The Tánaiste explained that when the time comes to change your car, the Government want to put in place the right incentives to tip the balance in favour of electric.
I think the jury is still out on the merits of plug-in hybrids and while some people may be worried about damage to the environment as companies source material to produce electric batteries, it looks like fully electric is the best option long term.
All the car manufacturers now offer at least one electric car. Recently, I drove the impressive Jaguar I-Pace.
The test car came in a very attractive Portofino Blue and I got plenty of enquires at local supermarkets about the car.
It was dark blue outside, but had a very bright interior thanks to the cream seats, which are really comfortable.
It might be difficult to keep the seats clean if children are eating sweets or don’t take off their football boots when getting into the car.
It might be advisable to carry a few J-Cloths in the car.
With 400 brake horse power, the I-Pace can get you from zero to 100km/h in under five seconds and has a top speed of 200km/h, but that kind of driving is not recommended if you want to save power.
The rear end is different to any other car around.
The boot is huge, but there’s no spare wheel as that space is given over to the electrics needed to power the car. As with most electric cars the door handles pop out when unlocked.
The I-Pace was designed by Scottish-born Ian Callum and was launched in 2018. Last year it got a mild refresh.
The dash is well laid out and the controls are easy to use, but I did have to read the manual to adjust the heated seats.
On the dash you can see that when you take your foot off the accelerator the battery goes into charge mode.
The back seat passengers can leave down the arm rest and enjoy a drink. Also, there are plenty of charge points for mobile phones.
Prices start at €74,940 which is not cheap, but then this is a luxurious car. There is an eight-year guarantee in the 90kWh battery and you should get a 80 percent fill at a fast charging point in approximately 40 minutes. When fully charged the range is around 465km. Road tax is only €120.
Jaguar recently announced a new five-year warranty or 150,000km whichever comes first, across its entire vehicle range, including the I-Pace and all mild or plug-in hybrid electric vehicles.
Opel celebrate continued sales growth
A SIGNIFICANT light commercial vehicle market share high of 10.7 percent, combined with new dealer appointments and a renewed car sales momentum has propelled the Opel brand up to 8th position overall in the Irish sales charts, year-to-date July 2022.
The recent launch of the new Grandland and the arrival of the much-anticipated all-new Opel Astra just weeks ago has helped Opel reach a combined passenger car and light commercial vehicle national market share of 3.9 percent, (+6.65 percent) in a difficult market which has contracted by seven percent.
“Opel’s robust performance in July was extremely pleasing,” said James Brooks, Opel Ireland’s Managing Director.
“Our new Opel Astra and Grandland have been launched to tremendous reviews and together with the Corsa, Crossland and Opel Mokka, Continental Irish Small SUV of the Year 2022, have significantly raised our profile in terms of our passenger car portfolio.
“The strategic appointment of new dealers in Laois (Cummins Motor Group) and Mayo (Rochford Motors, Ballyhaunis) has further strengthened our Network performance.”
Notably, Opel significantly increased sales of its light commercial vehicles in Ireland in the first seven months of 2022.
July year-to-date, sales grew by 21 percent to 1,837 units in a declining market (-21.4 percent), pushing Opel’s national van market share up from 6.9 percent to 10.7 percent, to place 4th on the van sales podium.
The all-electric Vivaro-e, Irish Van of the Year 2022, is Ireland’s best-selling electric van, commanding 39.6 percent of the emerging EV market.
“The Vivaro-e remains Ireland’s best-selling electric van in 2022, with the all-new Opel Combo-e now taking its place in the top ten electric sales chart,” Brooks continued.
“But our vans have by no means exhausted their full potential and we’re currently tracking strong interest in the all-new Opel Movano van, just arrived in Ireland, which will also be available in fully electric guise later in 2022.
“Indeed, we expect to generate further impetus in light of the Government’s newly launched Zero Emission Vehicles Ireland programme, which will see businesses encouraged to trial EVs free of charge for a minimum period of three months. Opel is very well positioned to take full advantage of the emerging electric commercial market.”