Lighter Sharper Range Rovers on the Horizon

By: Scott James

The Range Rover, that iconic automobile and synonymous with the Barbour jacket and green Wellington boot brigade is apparently pencilled in for a revamp. This remodelling is due to be completed in time for a launch sometime in 2012.

The Range Rover and Land Rover are the major product's that show for Ford that the hugely successful ownership of Land Rover has worked.

Strong rumours indicate that one of the key features of the new Range Rover will be an all aluminium body shell. This coupled with possibly sharper styling; more luxurious interior, new engines and possibly a hybrid power train might actually push the top of the range, Range Rover over the hundred thousand pound mark.

This will open up totally new territory for Range Rover and the all aluminium body shell is forecast to save around 40% of the Range Rovers unpainted body shell. This figure, it is projected will translate itself into a potential overall bodyweight saving of approximately somewhere between 300kg and 400kg.

Inside sources claim that the later figure is one they are aiming at but then to paraphrase things "they would say that wouldn't they". With this reduction in kerb weight the design team are also aiming for an increase in fuel efficiency and overall economy which could see mpg figures of an average of nearly 22mpg as opposed to the existing 19mpg of the present models. Now this is a saving in fuel consumption of nearly 15 percent and if achieved would be extremely impressive.

A lot of the technologies developed in Fords other British acquisition Land Rovers sister company Jaguar are expected to make their way over to the new Range Rover such as the rivet-bonded body. This new technique (not necessarily new per se but new to Jaguar) coupled with the "bolt-on front end" keeps repair costs down to a minimum in the event of a frontal crash.

The engineers in Land Rover are confident that experience gained over the years will help them to grasp quickly any vagaries of off-road driving on an aluminium car. They are convinced that there will be no excessive durability or warranty problems. The experience gained with trying to overcome steel and alloy problems in the past have helped given them new confidence this time round.

"When we've had problems before, it's been where steel and alloy are joined together. With all alloy, these problems go away" an insider was quoted.

One of the key new focuses of the Project team at both Land Rover and Range Rover will be to affect a fresh and clean design for both new marques. Apparently the buzz words are "premium adventure" for the Land Rover and "premium sophistication" for the Range Rover.

With possible changes to overall appearance the designers are keen to maintain the overall look and feel of the Range Rover and to ensure that it oozes luxury and retains its legendary road presence.

Car Focus
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 

» More on Car Focus
 



Share this article :
Click to see more related articles