New Range Rover first pictures

These are the first official pictures of the new Range Rover that Land Rover will show for the first time at the Paris Motor Show in September. Although it has so faithfully carried forward distinctive Range Rover design cues that it might look, at first glance, like a facelift, the new Range Rover is actually new from the ground up.

You will not be surprised to hear that the new Range Rover is larger that the outgoing model. You probably won’t be surprised to hear that it is also claimed to be stronger and more refined. But, you might be surprised to hear that the new car has shed 39% of its weight, compared with the current model.

New Range Rover

This is really the headline story of the new Range Rover. The staggering loss of 420kg has been achieved by switching to a lightweight all-aluminium monocoque body structure.

So why is weight loss so significant? A lighter car – particularly with a weight loss of this significance - has the potential to be much nimbler and more agile. Without the drag of hauling 39% of excess body weight, it should also be more economical and, as a result, lower in emissions.

No surprise then, that these are exactly the improvements that Land Rover are highlighting. The new Range Rover, say Land Rover, offers “significant enhancements in performance and agility” along with notable improvements in both fuel economy and carbon dioxide emissions.

While the Range Rover Evoque I have just driven is a more radically styled car, with its distinctive coupé style roof, the photographs of the new Range Rover reveal a more conservative approach. While the Evoque is designed to appeal to new, younger entrants to the Range Rover fold with its stylish, youthful looks. This car is designed not to scare loyal Range Rover buyers who have grown comfortable with the evolutionary design changes. But look closer and you can see that the detailing gives the new model a more stylish edge.

The need to be faithful to the Range Rover look, obviously played heavily on the design team.

“Designing the next generation Range Rover, following over forty years of success, came with a huge responsibility to protect the DNA of such an icon,” said Gerry McGovern, Land Rover Design Director and Chief Creative Officer. “Our design team worked incredibly hard to capture the elegant proportions and pure surfaces which have been a feature of the best Range Rover designs.”

new Range Rover

What is perhaps surprising, given the apparent move to develop Range Rover as a sub-brand, is that the Range Rover is simply the “Range Rover”, without any model designation.

Buyers of the new Range Rover will have the choice of supercharged V8 petrol engine, TDV6 and TDV8 diesel engines. The new model will be available to order from September 2012 with customer deliveries scheduled to start from early 2013.
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