Range Rover Celebrates 40th Birthday
The Range Rover celebrates its 40th birthday on 17 June, 2010. One of the most significant vehicles in the history of motoring, the Range Rover was the world's first vehicle as good on-road as offroad.
It was the first fully capable luxury 4x4 and was a milestone in the development of the SUV.
Phil Popham, Land Rover Managing Director, said:
"Land Rover has a unique history of product innovation. But the Range Rover probably remains the most historically significant vehicle we have ever launched. It is one of the most important vehicles in the history of motoring."
Said Robin Colgan, Managing Director Land Rover MENA, 'Range Rover is by far our best selling model in this region - our flagship Range Rover Vogue and Range Rover Sport account for around 80% of our volume and are very popular with ex-pats and local buyers alike. When the Range Rover arrived in the region it was the world's first luxury utility vehicle, and its arrival coincided with the regions first major oil boom, which meant people had the disposable income to purchase a vehicle that was luxurious but could handle the arduous conditions of the Middle East. This established a special relationship between Range Rover and the Middle East and it's a relationship that endures to this day.'
There have been three generations of Range Rover. The original, now known as the Classic, went on sale in 1970 and continued in production, with numerous upgrades and a multiplicity of variants, for just over 25 years.
The second-generation vehicle, known as the P38a, went on sale in 1994 and was replaced in 2001 by the current model. The continuing success of the Range Rover ensured that other premium makers jumped into the booming luxury SUV market. The latest version has enjoyed higher annual sales than any previous models and continues to be popular around the world. Sold around the world, from London to Los Angeles, Sydney to Shanghai, Turin to Tokyo, the Range Rover remains the ultimate choice for the luxury SUV customer.
"The Range Rover is really four vehicles in one," says managing director Phil Popham. "It's a seven-days-a-week luxury motor car; a leisure vehicle that will range far and wide on the highways and noways of the world; a high performance car for long distance travel; and a working cross-country vehicle."
From princes to politicians, from rock gods to rock climbers, from footballers to farmers, the Range Rover has always appealed to a diverse group of customers.
A second model line, the Range Rover Sport, was launched in 2005, aimed at more sports-oriented driver-focused customers. It has been a great success, and in 2007 was Land Rover's biggest selling vehicle worldwide.
Later this year, a further member of the Range Rover family will be added, taking the portfolio to three model lines. The new vehicle will be smaller, lighter and more fuel efficient, tying in perfectly with the Range Rover brand's commitment to environmental sustainability. Yet it will be no less premium, no less luxurious, and no less special than the other Range Rover models.