Routine Inspection Discovers $40K Hole in Jaguar I-Pace EV!

The owner of a nearly new Jaguar I-Pace electric car near Oslo, Norway received a shocking report during a vehicle inspection. In what was a routine service visit, a small hole was discovered in the underside of the owner’s all-electric Jaguar SUV. An initial estimate to repair the damage was quoted at approximately $40,000 USD According to Norwegian website Motor.No.

At just a year and a half old, the cost estimate is roughly half the vehicle’s new purchase price. Leading to the extraordinary repair quote is the intensive labor and parts cost associated with correcting the puncture in the underbody. Where on a traditional internal combustion engine-powered vehicle the hole could be smoothed and welded, the proximity to the Jaguar’s battery pack makes a simple repair inviable.

Jaguar’s official repair procedure entails completely removing the battery box and replacing it. Thermal management is crucial to the I-Pace’s Lithium-ion battery performance and longevity, and the battery box requires thermal past be used to protect and insulate the battery. Assuming the estimate was out of line, a second quote was performed at another independent facility with a similar result.

At $40,000, the repair process does not include the vehicle’s 90 kWh battery pack. While one of the two garages assumes there is no damage to the battery pack, the other indicates there may be damage to one or two of its 36 modules. 

Debate over the hole’s cause

From marks on the underbody beside the hole, the vehicle’s owner believes the damage may have been caused when the car was lifted on a hoist for tire servicing. The possibility has not been ruled out, although the garages involved have said the cause might have been due to a curb or some other serious physical impact.

The Jaguar’s owner is insured, so he won’t be responsible to pay the full cost of repairs for the underbody puncture. He’s personally more concerned with the two months he’s been without his car.

The insurer involved, Gjensidige, noted that they’ve had several claims with EVs that have damage to the undercarriage in a similar fashion which can cause them to be deemed a total loss with extreme repair costs.

An industry problem

Jaguar has committed to being an all-electric brand by 2025. Many other brands have made similar pledges with varying time frames including General Motors, Volkswagen, and Ford. Volvo is the latest to make a commitment, stating their lineup will only encompass new electric vehicles by 2030.

The move may be fueled by tech-savvy car buyers, an effort to reduce emissions, fuel economy, and overall vehicle longevity, but problems like the damaged I-Pace’s undercarriage open the door to extreme insurance costs that could result in higher premiums.

For dealerships and repair facilities, liability for damage such as this could be devastating. Although it hasn’t been proven, the assumption from at least one party is that it was caused by a service shop.

Undercarriage inspections help avoid this situation

While the impact may seem minor visually, the expense is beyond what anyone imagined for this situation. A repair shop could successfully avoid being mistakenly blamed for causing this damage by performing accurate, comprehensive underbody inspections during the check-in procedure. With a system like UVeye’s Helios, every vehicle that passes over it is scanned by five cameras to identify deficiencies and areas of concern with the aid of AI.

Should a vehicle arrive with damage such as the puncture on the Jaguar I-Pace mentioned in this story, it can be identified immediately and the customer advised. It eliminates the possibility of misplaced blame for damage, saving the repair shop on either the cost to correct the condition or an insurance claim that is sure to increase premiums.

What’s more, the ability to identify major conditions – even those measuring a fraction of an inch in size – develops a dealership’s or service center’s trustworthiness to the vehicle owner. When they know their vehicle will be inspected on every visit and problems are identified in real time with the use of a generated visual report, trust and transparency are nurtured in that relationship. It reinforces customer loyalty.

Use Cases for Automatic Inspection

Help develop trust with automotive clients by implementing the highest-quality visual inspection technology on the market today. Whether it’s with the undercarriage inspection system Helios, the 360-degree inspection technology in Atlas, or the tire inspection system Artemis, UVeye has developed a solution for you.