|Assembly||Solihull plant, Solihull, United Kingdom|
|Body and chassis|
|Layout||Front engine, four-wheel drive|
The Range Rover is a large luxury four-wheel drive sport utility vehicle (SUV) produced by British car maker Land Rover, a subsidiary of Jaguar Land Rover, and serves as its flagship model. The model, launched in 1970, is now in its fourth generation. Range Rover is also being developed by Land Rover as its premium brand, and it is used as a brand name on two other models – the Range Rover Evoque and the Range Rover Sport.
The Rover Company (the creator of the Land Rover marque) had been experimenting with a larger model than the Land Rover Series as far back as 1951, when the Rover P4-based two-wheel-drive "Road Rover" project was developed by Gordon Bashford. This was shelved in 1958, and the idea lay dormant until 1966, when engineers Spen King and Gordon Bashford set to work on a new model.
In 1967, the first Range Rover prototype was built, with the classic Range Rover shape clearly discernible, but with a different front grille and headlight configuration. The design of the Range Rover was finalised in 1969. Twenty-six Velar engineering development vehicles were built between 1969 and 1970 and were road registered with the number plates YVB151H through to YVB177H. The Velar name was derived from the Italian "velare" meaning to veil or to cover. Range Rover development engineer Geof Miller used the name as a decoy for registering pre-production Range Rovers. The Velar company was registered in London and produced 40 pre-production vehicles that were built between 1967 and 1970. Most of these Velar pre-production vehicles are accounted for and have survived into preservation.
In 1972, the British Trans-Americas Expedition became the first vehicle-based expedition to traverse the Americas from north-to-south, including traversing the roadless Darién Gap. The specially modified Range Rovers used for this expedition are now on display in the British Motor Industry Heritage Trust collection at Gaydon, Warwickshire.
Before 1987, Land Rover vehicles were only sold in the United States through the grey market. The Land Rover company began selling the Range Rover officially in the U.S. on 16 March 1987. From that time until 1993, the U.S. marketing was all in the name of Range Rover, because it was the only model offered in the American market. In 1993, with the arrival of the Defender 110 and the imminent arrival of the Land Rover Discovery, the company's U.S. sales were under the name "Land Rover North America".
In 2005, Land Rover launched another model under the Range Rover brand – the Range Rover Sport, which was based on the Land Rover Discovery platform, but the new Range Rover Sport has the latest Range Rover platform.
In 2011, the Range Rover Evoque was launched.
The Range Rover
First generation (1970–1996)
|Range Rover "Classic"|
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||3-door SUV
|Related||Land Rover Discovery|
|Engine||3.5 L V8 134 hp Carburettor
3.5 L V8 155 hp
3.9 L V8 182 hp
4.2 L V8 200 hp
2.4 L 112 hp VM Turbodiesel
2.5 L 119 hp VM Turbodiesel
2.5 L 111 hp 200TDi Turbodiesel
2.5 L 111 hp 300TDi Turbodiesel
|Wheelbase||100 in (2,540 mm)|
|Length||176 in (4,470 mm)|
|Width||70 in (1,778 mm)|
|Height||70 in (1,778 mm)|
The first-generation Range Rover was produced between 1970 and 1996.
Unlike other 4x4s such as the Jeep Wagoneer, the original Range Rover was not designed as a luxury-type vehicle. While certainly up-market compared to preceding Land Rover models, the early Range Rovers had fairly basic, utilitarian interiors with vinyl seats and plastic dashboards that were designed to be washed down with a hose. Convenience features such as power steering, carpeted floors, air conditioning, cloth/leather seats, and wooden interior trim were fitted later.
The Range Rover was a body-on-frame design with a box section ladder type chassis, like the contemporary Series Land Rovers. The Range Rover utilised coil springs as opposed to leaf springs, permanent four-wheel drive, and four-wheel disc brakes. The Range Rover was originally powered by the Rover V8 engine. Later models were powered by a 4.4 L BMW V8, until the introduction of a 3.6 litre TDV8 engine.
Originally, the Range Rover was fitted with a detuned 135 hp (101 kW) version of the Buick-derived Rover V8 engine. In 1984, the engine was fitted with Lucas fuel injection, boosting power to 155 hp (116 kW). The 3.5 litre (3,528 cc) engine was bored out to a displacement of 3.9 litres (3,947 cc) for the 1990 model year, and 4.2 litre (4,215 cc) in 1992 (1993 model year) for the 108-inch Long Wheelbase Vogue LSE (County LWB [long wheelbase] in North America). One of the first significant changes came in 1981, with the introduction of a four-door body. Shortly after they introduced twin thermo fan technology to reduce significant overheating problems 1970s models experienced in Australia. In 1988, LR introduced a durable 2.4 litre turbodiesel (badged Vogue Turbo D) arrived with 112 bhp (84 kW), manufactured by Italian VM Motori. The same engine was also available in the Rover SD1 passenger car. The diesel project was codenamed project Beaver. During the project, 12 world records were broken, including the fastest diesel SUV to reach 100 mph (160 km/h), and the furthest a diesel SUV has travelled in 24 hours. In 1990 project Otter was unvieled. This was a mildly tuned 2.5 litre, 119 bhp (89 kW) version of the 'Beaver' 2.4. In 1992, Land Rover finally introduced their own diesel engines in the Range Rover, beginning with the 111 bhp (83 kW) 200TDi, first released in the Land Rover Discovery and following in 1994, the 300 TDi, again with 111 bhp.
The very first Range Rover was a green model with the registration "YVB 151H", and is now on exhibition at Huddersfield Land Rover Centre, Huddersfield, West Yorkshire.
- Utility vehicles
The first-generation Range Rover served as the base for specialist utility vehicles. These included the Carmichaels International six-wheel Fire Tender. This was a two-door model with an extended chassis and a third "lazy" axle added. Designed for small airfield use, it had a water-pump mounted on the front bumper driven directly by the V8's crankshaft. The MoD purchased them for the RAF, this version was called the TACR2. Carmichaels was contracted to supply the modified chassis and the fire-fighting body was supplied and mounted by Gloster-Saro. These were four-door versions using an internally mounted water-pump driven by a gearbox PTO. At least one of these (at Duxford IWM) has been converted into a full 6x6 by linking a drive-through unit to the two rear axles' differentials.
Second generation (1994–2002)
|Range Rover (P38A)|
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||5-door SUV|
|Engine||4.0 L Rover V8
4.6 L Rover V8
2.5 L BMW M51 Turbodiesel I6
|Wheelbase||108.1 in (2,746 mm)|
|Length||185.5 in (4,712 mm)|
|Width||74.4 in (1,890 mm)|
|Height||71.6 in (1,819 mm)|
After 25 years from the introduction of the first-generation Range Rover, the second-generation Range Rover—model-designation P38A (see note below)—was introduced for the 1995 model year, with an updated version of the Rover V8 engines. There was also the option of a 2.5 litre BMW six-cylinder turbo-diesel with a BOSCH injection pump. This was the first Diesel injection with electronic controls in a Land Rover, before common rails were introduced. This was a result of BMW's subsequent ownership of Rover Group and hence the Land Rover brand. The new model offered more equipment and premium trims, positioning the vehicle above the Land Rover Discovery to face the increased competition in the SUV marketplace. This model was the last to feature the Rover V8 and interior leather supplied by Connolly who went out of business in 2002. It was the first model to feature Satellite Navigation as an option.
Third generation (2002–2012)
|Range Rover (L322)|
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||5-door SUV|
|Transmission||8-speed automatic (since 2010)
6-speed automatic (since 2006)
5-speed automatic (2002–2005)
|Wheelbase||113.4 in (2,880 mm)|
|Length||194.9 in (4,950 mm) (2002–2005)
195.7 in (4,971 mm) (since 2006)
195.9 in (4,976 mm)
|Width||75.7 in (1,923 mm) (2002–2009)
76.1 in (1,933 mm) (since 2010)
|Height||73.3 in (1,862 mm) (2002–2005)
74.9 in (1,902 mm) (2006–2009)
73.9 in (1,877 mm) (since 2010)
In 2002, the third-generation model was introduced which saw the model move further up-market. Planned and developed under BMW ownership the third generation was to share components and systems (electronics, core power units etc.) with the 7 Series (E38). It was designed to accommodate BMW's M62 V8 engines for future models. The manual transmission was dropped entirely, leaving only the automatic. The 7 Series electronics system was being phased out during the development of the third-generation Range Rover and being replaced with the electronics from the BMW E39 5 Series.
Fourth generation (since 2012)
|Range Rover (L405)|
Fourth generation Range Rover at 2012 Paris Motor Show
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||5-door Full-Size SUV|
|Wheelbase||2,922 mm (115.0 in)|
|Length||4,999 mm (196.8 in)|
|Width||2,073 mm (81.6 in)|
|Height||1,835 mm (72.2 in)|
The Range Rover Hybrid is diesel-powered hybrid electric model unveiled at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show. The ordering process began in September 2013, and retail deliveries in Europe are slated to start in early 2014.
Range Rover Sport
On 26 November 2004, Land Rover released the first photographs of the Range Rover Sport, a new model it planned to show to the public for the first time at the 2005 North American International Auto Show. The Range Rover Sport is a production car development of the Range Stormer concept vehicle the company showcased in the 2004 North American International Auto Show. Though called the Range Rover Sport, it was not merely a new specification within the Range Rover line-up, but rather an entirely new vehicle, based on the Discovery/LR3 chassis. This model was released for sale in late 2005 as a 2006 model. In 2013 a new completely redesigned version was released for sale as a 2014 model year. Unlike the original, it is completely based on the current flagship Range Rover with almost identical equipment and capabilities in a smaller body style.
Range Rover Evoque
The Range Rover Evoque, which went into production in July 2011, has its roots in the Land Rover LRX concept car; with which it bears an almost identical resemblance. It is available with either a three-door or five-door hatchback body, front-wheel drive or four-wheel drive and with a 2-litre turbocharged petrol engine or one of two different power output 2.2-litre turbo-diesel engines.
The Range Rover brand has attracted some controversy, particularly from those concerned with the potential negative environmental impact of large, luxury vehicles. In 2005, members of Greenpeace temporarily disrupted Range Rover production at the Land Rover plant in Solihull.
In 2004, Spen King criticised SUV owners who drove their vehicles in urban areas, saying that vehicles like the Range Rover he created were "never intended as a status symbol but later incarnations of my design seem to be intended for that purpose."
- "The best of the British car industry". AROnline. Retrieved 12 November 2011.
- Maag, Christopher (3 July 2010). "Charles S. King, Range Rover Designer, Dies at 85". nytimes.com (The New York Times). Retrieved 5 July 2010.
- Shephard, Dave. "The History of the Range Rover Marque". Retrieved 16 March 2006.[dead link]
- The Range Rover Register. "Velar History". Archived from the original on 13 April 2006. Retrieved 16 March 2006.
- "Charles S. King, Range Rover Designer, Dies at 85". The New York Times. 3 July 2010. Retrieved 18 July 2011.
- "YVB 151H - Range Rover Chassis No 1". Landrovercentre.com. Retrieved 2 August 2010.[dead link]
- Official Land Rover documentation collections for both 1970-1985 (LHP1, v1.1) and 1986-1994 (LHP2, v1.1) Range Rovers, for example, refers to the vehicles as "Range Rover Classic", despite never being called that when they were originally built.
- "Range Rover: Birthday Child with new Transmission Technology". Retrieved 24 August 2010.
- "Range Rover Mk4". Auto Express. Retrieved 1 January 2013.
- "Range_Specifications". Land Rover.
- Holloway, Hilton. "Radical new Range Rover revealed". AutoCar. Retrieved 24 July 2012.
- Ewing, Steven J. (11 September 2013). "Land Rover debuts Range Rover Hybrid, not bound for US". Autoblog.com. Retrieved 11 September 2013.
- Hardy, Sam (6 March 2012). "Range Rover Evoque Convertible". Auto Express. Retrieved 23 July 2012.
- Madslien, Jorn (16 May 2005). "Business | Range Rover: Beauty or beast?". BBC News. Retrieved 24 February 2010.
- "Business | 15 arrested in Land Rover protest". BBC News. 16 May 2005. Retrieved 24 February 2010.
- ""4x4 Drivers Are Stupid And Pompous; Mini-driving Range Rover designer raps school run cars", Annie Brown, Scottish Daily Record & Sunday, 28 June 2004". 28 June 2004. Retrieved 5 September 2011.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Land Rover Range Rover.|
|Land Rover, vehicle timeline, 1940s–present|
|Off-road vehicle||Series I||Series II||Series III|
|101 FC||Ninety & One Ten||Defender|
|Compact SUV||Freelander||Freelander 2|
|Range Rover Evoque|
|Mid-size SUV||Discovery I||Discovery II||Discovery 3||Discovery 4|
|Range Rover Sport|
|Full-size SUV||Range Rover Classic|
|Range Rover||Range Rover||Range Rover|