Jaguar: I-PACE becomes the first EV-taxi in Munich
The British automaker has managed a prime offensive move on the Stuttgart-based Mercedes.
Jaguar has provided a number of Jaguar I-PACE electric vehicles to the foremost taxi-services provider of Munich. According to a report by Bloomberg, the taxi business in Munich is dominated by Mercedes Benz, which, despite its close links to the German taxi industry, has not yet delivered its fully electric taxi. Only recently, Daimler announced that the EVs of Mercedes Benz will be available under the EQ brand name - the taxi version of EQ C will reportedly be delivered to taxi operators next year.
Germany has taken steps to electrify the vehicles in its streets. Only last year though, the German Chancellor admitted that their 2020 vision for 1 million EVs is unlikely to materialise. Munich is considered one of the most polluted cities in Germany, ranking second in highest NO2 pollution levels after Stuttgart.
Although the Jaguar I-PACE has a much higher initial cost than the ordinarily used Mercedes Benz E-Class (almost twice as expensive, at a cost surpassing 80,000$ in Europe), it does come with a distinct set of advantages. Firstly, running costs will undeniably be lower, due to the car's electric nature - the I-PACE sports an all-electric range of almost 300 miles, which, particularly in city-driving conditions, can go a long way. Secondly, electric rides will be subsidised by the municipality with 0.20EUR/km (0.37USD/mile) payments.
The EV battle will prove to be fascinating - will the German taxi drivers abandon their all-time favourite Mercedes Benz for the British EV? While Jaguar has secured a first-mover advantage (and let's not forget that it is the car of choice for Waymo in the United States), it has a relatively bad reputation for the many dependability issues of the past - although it has improved greatly in the past few years. Will the groundbreaking I-PACE change the world's perception of the British automaker? We will soon find out.
Photo Credit: Jaguar