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As their first electric vehicle, sitting on a new platform and powered by new electric motors, we weren’t expecting the new Jaguar I-Pace to go into production so soon.

Set to debut at the 2017 Frankfurt auto show in September before launching in Europe this year, followed by the U.S. in 2018, production of the I-Pace is already underway at Magna Steyr's plant in Austria.

Making this possible was the early collaborative efforts between the Magna team and the Jaguar Land Rover engineers. Speaking with Automotive News, Karl-Friedrich Stracke, Magna Steyr's president of vehicle technology and engineering, stated that his team was involved with the I-Pace’s development almost from the start. While the guys at Jaguar designed the vehicle, his team figured out how to efficiently build it.

"We were invited very early in the product development time frame in order to provide our process and manufacturing engineering proposals," Stracke said. "We tried to include the right processes in the product early on. In other words, do the product design the right way from the start. We led from the manufacturability point of view.”

This is good news for future I-Pace owners as Magna Steyr has a track record for producing high-quality vehicles including the Aston Martin Rapide sport sedan. Perhaps a glitch free launch will help do away with Jaguar’s old reputation of poor quality products once and for all.

We’ve already seen spy shots of a production ready I-Pace, now we just need to patiently wait for its official debut.
 

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The first few models to roll off the production line is most likely going to be used for test drive by journalists and rotate around the various dealership showrooms. Those will probably have a few quirks before Magna fixes any problems they find in the production line.

Maybe the first I-Pace for sale has already been produced.
 

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With how impatient some buyers are getting these days, this is a smart move on Jaguar's end to stockpile some so people won't be waiting so long for an I-Pace and they can allocate a bit more resource to fill custom orders.
 

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Definitely the smartest thing to do. Thankfully though, they're in a very empty market where there really isn't a competitor to go off to instead of waiting for an I-Pace so that plays well for them. First to the scene can usually get a way with a little bit more.
 

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They don't mention a selling price, but I'm expecting something around what the F-Pace is sold for + 10-15%, perhaps in the range of $80k MSRP. Jaguar won't be shifting these in large volumes, but depending on how it does the I-Pace could be a sort of halo car for their future electric vehicles.
 
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