Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Warwickshire, UK
In my opinion (not the opinion of JLR I should stress) the pressure to ship the car out to customers 'on time' caused issues in software not being fully tested or ready. This is not confined to i-PACE by the way, JLR is guilty of this quite a lot.
i-PACE was an interesting car for lots of reasons, but mainly because it was not a car that Marketing asked for. Normally, Marketing would identify a 'hole' in the market that is potentially profitable, give Engineering a set of specifications/dimensions/costs etc and Engineering would go away and develop a solution to fill that void.
In the case of i-PACE, it is a car that Legislation demanded - selling an electric vehicle enabled JLR to receive environmental credits which offset the sale of its conventional-fuel cars. These credits (I think) are awarded on a model-year basis, so if a 2019 model year electric vehicle is sold, JLR is allowed to sell more petrol (or diesel) cars. Given that there is an end-date after which a 2019 model year car becomes 2020, this gives an immovable deadline for JLR to ship cars. And lots of commercial pressure to meet this deadline.
Therefore the legislative pressure demanded an electric vehicle that Marketing didn't necessarily ask for, or know how to sell... make of this what you will.
Often dealers are left with the task to update software to latest level after the vehicles are shipped, as the vehicles are on the water for quite a while (6 weeks to USA) and the software is effectively 'free' to distribute (unlike physical parts).