More details have emerged regarding Range Rover’s upcoming electric vehicle.
Jaguar Land Rover refer to it internally as a ‘medium SUV’ despite it sharing a platform with the upcoming full-sized XJ. This places it around the Range Rover Velar in size, though Autocar reports it’ll be even more sleek and aerodynamic than the already rakish Velar.
The placement of the battery, however, should yield a more spacious cabin than the Velar.
The upcoming Range Rover has been referred to internally as the Road Rover, and Jaguar Land Rover has registered this nameplate. The EV will sit within the Range Rover family alongside the Range Rover Evoque, Velar, Sport and the OG Range Rover.
As the codename suggests, the Road Rover will be more on-road focused than existing Range Rover-branded products. It’ll still be able to tackle more rugged terrain than the next-generation electric Porsche Macan and Audi E-Tron Sportback, however.
Like the next-generation XJ (teased above), the Road Rover will use the electric version of Jaguar Land Rover’s Modular Longitudinal Platform and will be built alongside the XJ at the Castle Bromwich plant.
The Road Rover is expected to feature an electric motor on each axle, allowing power to be delivered to all four wheels as is expected from a Range Rover product.
The electric MLA platform can house batteries of up to 90.2kWh and is capable of an electric range of 466km.
Both the XJ and Road Rover are crucial for Jaguar Land Rover’s fortunes in the all-important Chinese market, where the company is recovering from a dramatic sales slump.
Jaguar Land Rover has committed to offering a hybrid or battery-electric version of all its models by next year.
The Road Rover name has some history, Land Rover bosses in the 1950s developing a prototype bearing the name. Based on a modified Rover P5 platform, the Road Rover was rear-wheel-drive and designed with on-road comfort in mind, bearing little resemblance to the rugged, four-wheel-drive Land Rover Series II.
It came close to reaching production, tipped for a 1960 launch according to Austin Rover Online, but the project was scuttled.
Eventually, the idea of a more bitumen-friendly Land Rover was revisited. This then led to the very first generation of Range Rover.
Jaguar Land Rover bosses were said to be considering the use of the Road Rover nameplate out of concern the Range Rover nameplate isn’t compatible with a battery-electric vehicle.
Autocar now reports Jaguar Land Rover will brand it as a Range Rover due to the brand’s prestige image.
If that’s the case, don’t expect to see the Road Rover nameplate. Technically, Range Rover is a sub-brand of Land Rover and therefore it’s unlikely the company would launch a car called the Land Rover Range Rover Road Rover.