The next-generation Range Rover, due by 2021, is intended to eclipse a new era of rivals in the fast-growing super-luxury SUV segment.
With competition from the Bentley Bentayga and Rolls-Royce Cullinan as well as upcoming, more mainstream models such as the BMW X8 and Audi Q9, Land Rover’s task with the fifth-generation Range Rover is to create a vehicle that surpasses all of these rivals. It will attempt do so using not only its unique heritage but also technological advancements in powertrains, autonomous driving systems and infotainment.
Land Rover recently confirmed that the upcoming Range Rover, alongside the next Range Rover Sport, will use an all-new architecture. The Range Rover, which turns 50 next year, is due early in the next decade.
To prepare for these models, its Solihull plant is going through a major refit to accommodate the advanced technology that will be used in future Range Rovers.
As a result, production of the Discovery will move from Solihull to Jaguar Land Rover’s new plant in Nitra, Slovakia, from next year, also freeing up room for the potential production of the first electric Range Rovers.
The new Range Rover platform will be significantly lighter than the current model’s D7u architecture, and the lightest of all Jaguar Land Rover platforms.
Called Modular Longitudinal Architecture (MLA), the aluminium platform will be used on all future Jaguar Land Rover models ranging in size from the Jaguar XE to the Range Rover. By the middle of the next decade, next-generation versions of Jaguar Land Rover’s transverse-engined models are even expected to be switched to MLA too.
MLA’s weight saving is crucial to allow for the extra heft of battery packs for electric and hybrid models, plus the technology and drivetrains that MLA has been designed to accommodate. It is understood the next Range Rover, codenamed L460, will closely match the size of the current car, which is 4999mm long, 1983mm wide and 1920mm tall, with a wheelbase of 2922mm. That is slightly smaller than the Bentayga except in terms of height, where the Bentley SUV sits lower.