It’s hard to believe, but the Range Rover luxury SUV has been around for half a century, first launched on June 17, 1970. Designed as a 4×4 for gentleman hunters and urban country families, the Range Rover was designed as a more comfortable alternative to the all-terrain Land Rover Series IIA and III, while offering most of the off-road capabilities of its more utilitarian corporate cousins. Little has changed in the past 50 years, so the company is building a limited edition Range Rover Fifty to celebrate this story.
Heritage art, modern canvas
Land Rover calls the 1970 Range Rover the “original luxury 4×4,” and while we think the 1963 Jeep Wagoneer might dispute this claim, it’s hard to deny the impressive nameplate influence on SUVs from modern luxury. The Range Rover Fifty, which is offered on both the short-wheelbase RR and the full-size long-wheelbase RR, will drape some legacy style cues over the aluminum body sport-ute.
Based on the sumptuous Autobiography finish, the Fifty receives unique accents from Auric Atlas (pale gold) on the ventilation patterns of the wing, the grille trim and other exterior light elements. The “Fifty” badge – designed by Gerry McGovern, creative director of Land Rover himself – appears in several places inside and out. As some photos show, a shiny black trim can replace the Auric Atlas wicks, especially on the retro-inspired exterior colors Tuscan Blue, Bahama Gold and Davos White. Special Vehicle Operations will offer the Range Rover Fifty in these colors in extremely exclusive numbers, while the rest of the limited edition Fifty series will be painted in Carpathian gray, Rosello Red, Aruba or Santorini Black.
According to Land Rover, each Fifty destined for the American market is powered by a 5.0-liter V8 engine with 518 horsepower (386 kilowatts), a more powerful version of which appears in the SVAutobiography. Pricing and detailed specifications are underway when the limited edition goes on sale later this year, with only 1,970 copies in production.
Range Rover history
Launched in 1970, the first Range Rover “Classic” was fitted as standard with permanent all-wheel drive, a station wagon roof and complete trim and carpet (an original idea for an SUV at the time). Originally only available in two doors, a four-door model followed in 1981. This first Range Rover established many of the model’s iconic design elements, including a flip cover, “floating” roof and fender vents , as well as a friendly split tailgate picnic.
After a 25-year race, the Classic gave way to the Range Rover “P38A” for the 1995 model year (1996 for the United States). The P38 lost its wing vents but retained a familiar silhouette, a perfectly horizontal beltline and a floating roof. A modernized chassis and suspension system provided better driving without sacrificing a lot of off-road capacity.
The third generation Range Rover arrived in 2003, with a monocoque chassis and independent four-wheel suspension with air springs, perhaps becoming one of the most comfortable SUVs up to that point. This era also announced the first time that the name of the Range Rover was extended to a second vehicle, the smaller and more elegant Range Rover Sport. The two brothers and sisters still boasted of a lot of robustness.
The current Range Rover, launched for 2013, is the most technologically advanced to date. Using the lessons learned by its corporate cousins at Jaguar, the fourth generation Range Rover was the first SUV to feature an all-aluminum construction, cutting almost 1,000 pounds (454 kilograms) of its curb weight. predecessor. Meanwhile, the sophisticated Autobiography and SVAutobiography models offer plenty of space, luxury and power.
Today, the Range Rover family includes both the flagship SUV and the Sport, as well as a medium-sized Range Rover Velar and a subcompact Range Rover Evoque. Like most products with a Land Rover badge, each of these models offers far more capacity than one would expect from a luxury SUV.