Jaguar is rather famous – or possibly notorious – for dishing up model refreshes that barely move the needle. If you've see the litany of E-Pace spy photos over the last few months, you already know the new model won't differ much on the outside. Now that the 2021 E-Pace is official, we can see exactly what changed outside, inside, and under the skin.
First, the obvious. It will take a keen eye to differentiate between 2020 and 2021 models on the outside, but if you know what to look for you'll win automotive trivia night at the pub. The new E-Pace gets a bolder mesh-style grille with a chrome surround, and the larger corner vents in the fascia are ever-so-slightly reshaped and also adorned with chrome surrounds, save for models with the optional black appearance package. New headlights sport a double J-blade LED design, fender vents gain an embossed Jaguar Leaper, and that's pretty much it. Very subtle, indeed.
Gallery: Jaguar E-Pace (2020)
You'll notice the changes inside, however. Eyes will instantly fall to a revised centre stack that includes an 11.4-inch curved-glass touchscreen that stretches much lower than before. It's command-central for Jaguar's Pivi Pro infotainment system which features everything from Google and Microsoft Outlook to Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and more. It sits atop a centre console with an updated shift stalk, and for the driver there's a new steering wheel that's both familiar and different with a dual-spoke design at the base. A 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster remains optional, with dials holding steady as standard-issue equipment.
What you won't see right away are subtle things such as neat-o Jaguar upholstery tags, sculpted knee contact areas for more comfort, or the optional ClearSight rear view mirror tech, which uses a wide-angle rear camera to display a high-definition image on the frameless rear view mirror. Things you won't see at all are the new cabin filtration system, updated engine mounts, and revised front-suspension attachment points.
As for the powertrain, it's all carryover with the 2.0-litre diesel and petrol engines producing between 161 to 296 bhp, driving all four wheels with a nine-speed automatic transmission. However, new is a turbocharged 1.5-litre three cylinder petrol engine in mild hybrid or plug-in hybrid versions making 158 and 305 bhp, respectively.
The PHEV is equipped with a 15 kWh lithium-ion battery located under the boot floor. When fully charged it provides up to 34 miles (55 km) of all-electric range, enabling the new E-PACE PHEV to complete the average UK daily commute, to and from work, of 18.8 miles (30.2 km) in EV mode without requiring a recharge. 0-60 mph arrives in 6.1 seconds.
Yes, the refresh is subtle, but so is the price increase. Jaguar says the 2021 E-Pace will start at £32,575, which is £2,085 more than the outgoing model.