The I-Pace features unique looks but still has some Jaguar styling elements. Picture: JAGUAR
The I-Pace features unique looks but still has some Jaguar styling elements. Picture: JAGUAR

Munich — Jaguar’s I-Pace electric crossover is taking aim at German taxi fleets ruled by Mercedes-Benz luxury sedans.

The British premium car maker delivered 10 of its £62,925 battery models to Munich’s biggest taxi operator on Monday. Daimler’s upscale Mercedes brand accounts for about 60% of German taxis, with drivers mostly choosing the $46,200 E-Class sedan. The world’s biggest luxury car maker doesn’t start delivering its electric EQ C crossover until next year.

"We want to invite people in Munich to drive electric, but also drive Jaguar," Jaguar Land Rover’s CEO Ralf Speth said in an interview. "One of the reasons we wanted to be here was the mixed traffic — you’ve got the city traffic, [and] you’ve got the autobahn to the airport."

The vehicles, with a driving range of 476km, are part of a push by the city of Munich, also BMW’s hometown, to reduce pollution. Rides will be made cheaper with a 20c/km subsidy from the municipality. Jaguar, owned by India’s Tata Motors, started sales of its electric model earlier this year, the first of a growing line-up of a new generation of electric cars with more attractive designs and driving ranges as tightening emissions regulation forces car makers to switch to battery models.

Munich is among German cities with the highest levels of pollution from diesel vehicles, exceeding limits of harmful nitrogen oxides that has triggered potential driving bans for older cars.

Speth said the company was open to expanding into other city taxi fleets.

Bloomberg