RANGE ROVER: A HISTORY
FOR MORE THAN 50 YEARS, THE RANGE ROVER HAS SET STANDARDS IN LUXURY AND CAPABILITY
Since the reveal of the first-ever Range Rover in 1970, the vehicle, known as the world’s most luxurious SUV with outstanding off-road capability, has continuously evolved with design inspiration from the most surprising of places and technological advances that set it apart. We now look back at the history of the series of luxury SUVs known as the Range Rover family.
1969 - Prototype Range Rover Velar
In order to keep the prototype for the first-ever Range Rover a closely guarded secret, the designers and engineers behind this revolutionary new vehicle gave the top-secret prototype the name ‘Velar’ and even fitted the first 26 prototypes with a badge of the same name to disguise its identity. The name Velar was derived from the Italian word ‘velare,’ meaning to veil or cover.
1970 - First Production 3-Door Range Rover
Following the successful testing of the Velar concept vehicle, the first Range Rover was revealed to the world. It was met with widespread critical acclaim, thanks to a rare combination of capability and elegant design. It was the first vehicle to deliver permanent 4 Wheel Drive and feature split tailgate, clamshell hood and continuous waistline.
1981 - 4-Door Range Rover
After 11 years on the market, the Range Rover Classic was made available as a four-door vehicle, giving greater options to the vehicle’s ever-growing fan base.
1994 - Second Generation Range Rover
More luxurious than its predecessor, the design accents of the second-generation vehicle – such as the iconic silhouette and the introduction of rectangular headlights in place of the circular ones – have stood the test of time, making the vehicle instantly recognizable to the present day.
2001 - Third Generation Range Rover
Ever evolving, this Range Rover was the first to be built with a unibody. The design inspiration for the hull was taken from the tapering of the Italian Riva speedboat, while the pulleys on the luxury yacht prompted the metallic finishes inside the vehicle.
2004 - Range Stormer Concept
The Stormer concept car would become known for showcasing the future design direction of the Range Rover, as well as the bold approach to the adoption of new technology within the vehicles.
2005 - Range Rover Sport Production
The introduction of the first sports SUV in the Range Rover family showed the Land Rover commitment to performance. Engine options included a Supercharged 4.2-liter gasoline engine which delivered rapid performance. The Range Rover Sport also offered cross-linked air suspension, giving drivers optional ride height, which optimized comfort and 4x4 driving, on- and off-road. The varying height was one of the many distinctive new features which reflected the dynamic performance in the appearance of the vehicle.
2008 - LRX Concept
This cross-coupe concept vehicle was an ambitious and progressive step for the Land Rover design team. Targeting drivers who would rarely go off-road, the concept vehicle still retained the legendary capability of Land Rover while housing an interior dubbed as ‘futuristic’ by the press.
2011 - Range Rover Evoque Production
Named ‘Car of the Year’ by numerous outlets, the Range Rover Evoque made a splash as soon as it was unveiled at the Paris Motor Show in 2010. Many features seen on the LRX concept vehicle made their way into the luxurious cross-coupe, including the fresh interpretation of the classic Range Rover design.
2012 - Fourth Generation Range Rover
The fourth incarnation of the Range Rover was the first to feature a lightweight all-aluminum body and was instantly recognizable due to its long wheelbase and floating roof. The vehicle also featured the next-generation version of the Terrain Response® system developed by Land Rover. This in-built driving technology automatically selects the best vehicle setting for the terrain.
2013 - Range Rover Hybrid
The first hybrid of the Range Rover family not only delivered improved fuel economy and reduced emissions, but most importantly did not compromise on capability. To prove it, the vehicle embarked on a 10,000 miles journey from Solihull to Mumbai via the ultimate off-road driving test: the Himalayas.
2013 - Second Generation Range Rover Sport
Unveiled by James Bond actor Daniel Craig, this upgraded Range Rover Sport has increased efficiencies from the 3.0-liter V6 engine. Certain streets in New York were temporarily shut down during its launch.
2015 - Range Rover Sport SVR Launch
Engineered to deliver a high-performance SUV with optimum power, the Range Rover Sport SVR was the first to be produced by the Special Vehicle Operations Team. As the fastest Land Rover model ever, the vehicle offers an unforgettable drive. Its thrilling experience isn’t reserved only to anyone behind the wheel – in fact, the vehicle’s power is reflected in design features such as the quad tailpipes and unique rear spoiler.
2015 - Range Rover SVAutobiography
The pinnacle of refinement and luxury, the Range Rover SVAutobiography redefined the Range Rover experience. Attention to detail shows in the Brushed Aluminum finishes and the executive seating in the cabin. On the exterior, a unique choice of color palette ensured drivers were getting the ultimate luxury experience synonymous with Range Rover. The SVAutobiography Dynamic was introduced shortly after, and with its distinctive design and powerful V8 engine, the vehicle’s stance reflected its power and agility.
2015 - Range Rover Evoque Convertible
The very first convertible Range Rover, the Evoque Convertible, combined the capability Land Rover vehicles are renowned for but introduced a Z-fold roof, all while maintaining the strong visual stance crafted by Land Rover designers. The result is the world’s first premium compact and most capable all-terrain 4x4 convertible SUV.
From the top-secret Velar concept vehicle to the first ever Range Rover Evoque Convertible, the evolution of the Range Rover is clear. Never compromising on capability, the luxury SUV continues to set the bar in car design, capability and performance.
2017 - Range Rover Velar
An addition to the Range Rover family is revealed. With its compelling clean lines and visionary design cues, the Range Rover Velar promises to deliver an SUV with the same effortless capability, luxury and refinement expected of all our vehicles.
2017 - Range Rover and Range Rover Sport PHEVs
Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEVs) wore the Range Rover badge for the first time. Both offered all the luxury and capability customers expected, plus the benefit of whisper-quiet electric running with zero tailpipe emissions. The Range Rover Sport Plug-in Hybrid became the first vehicle to climb the towering 45-degree, 999-step staircase to Heaven's Gate in China.
2019 – Mild-hybrid technology introduced
Range Rover electrified again, this time with mild hybrid technology, in the Range Rover Sport HST. Its new 395 HP Ingenium gas engine added straight-six balance and refinement to the lineup, with Mild-Hybrid Electric Vehicle (MHEV) power for enhanced efficiency and performance. The HST model features a range of unique interior and exterior design enhancements.
2020 – The Range Rover Fifty LE to celebrate anniversary
The Range Rover marks its half-century with the highly desirable “Fifty” special edition, limited to 1,970 examples. Built on the luxuriously appointed Autobiography model, it has exclusive interior detailing and bespoke 22-inch wheels. Land Rover Special Vehicles customers can even specify one of three original launch colors: Tuscan Blue, Bahama Gold or Davos White.
European models shown.
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