Jaguar design head Ian Callum has grand expectations for EVs, expecting battery power to lead the biggest design revolution in automotive history.
The British automaker does not appear to be in a rush to bring an EV to market, but Callum is nonetheless imagining how cars of the future will no longer be restrained by powertrain packaging considerations.
“By removing so much of the mechanical hardware and placing the batteries in the floorplan you open up all sorts of possibilities with packaging,” he told Autocar in a recent interview. “The question is whether you make the cars smaller, but with the same interior space, or keep the cars the same size and offer more space – or perhaps both.”
Some companies are already taking advantage of such benefits. Tesla claims its new Model 3 has a more spacious cabin and more cargo space than any vehicle with similar exterior dimensions. Designers pushed the front seating area forward into the area typically occupied by an internal combustion engine, while front and rear trunks can be used for cargo.
Callum suggests designers will eventually demonstrate much more styling freedom than existing EVs have shown, including Tesla’s lineup. He points to Jaguar’s own C-X75 concept (pictured) as one example. The concept was originally designed as an EV, though engineers later adapted the car to fit a conventional powertrain.
Reports suggest Jaguar is working on an electric crossover for production, borrowing styling cues from the C-X75. A concept is rumored to be slated for 2017, with market arrival the following year, though the company has not yet publicly confirmed any details.
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