There’s a fair bit of angst in Land Rover marketing circles, because this traditional manufacturer of SUVs has finally decided to make a two-wheel-drive version of one of its models.
The new baby Range Rover-of-many-names (LRX at concept stage, currently Range Rover Compact as it nears production, but likely to be something else again in the showrooms) will have a two-wheel-drive model in its line-up.
After 60 years of making 4x4s that were always the most capable in their class off-road, the company is modifying its principles to cater for perhaps the biggest SUV demand of all — for drive-to-school models of fairly compact dimensions, which still offer users the comfort and security of an elevated driving position and the robustness of Land Rover design and build.
Though a serial owner of Land Rovers of the traditional kind, I see this new development as great news. And long overdue.
It was the Freelander, in this country at least, that opened up a market for just the vehicles above, expect that it missed out on many sales as the market expanded because a good proportion of buyers wouldn’t pay for extra traction and robustness they didn’t need.