Velar brings a new dimension of glamour and elegance to the Range Rover family. Designed to fill the white space between Range Rover Evoque and Range Rover Sport, this is a new type of Range Rover for a new type of customer.
1.1 Perfect proportions, precision execution
Velar is both instantly recognisable as a Range Rover and radical in its interpretation of the brand's DNA. The mid-size luxury SÚV is defined by formal, powerful volumes that are beautifully balanced by perfectly optimised volume and proportions. The large wheels – up to 22-inches in diameter – help to define the stunning silhouette while enhancing Velar's dramatic presence.
The floating roof and clamshell bonnet provide clear references to its lineage and visually reinforce the class-leading all-terrain capability for which all Range Rovers are renowned. The 2,874mm wheelbase (Evoque: 2,660mm; Range Rover Sport: 2,923mm) enhances Velar's visual length, and contributes to the exceptionally spacious cabin and luggage compartment – which is a spacious 558 litres (including standard spare reduced-section wheel). The continuous, rising waistline and tapering glasshouse balance formal elegance wîth a poised, sporting attitude.
The short front overhang and super-slim full-LED headlights further minimise visual weight. The longer rear overhang provides balance and highlights Velar's imposing length, and features a pronounced kick to add to the muscular stance. Twin chrome exhaust finishers are integrated perfectly into the rear bumper and provide a subtle reference to Velar's power and performance.Beautiful details, advanced technology
An upright, bold front graphic and long bonnet set the tone for Velar's exterior design language. The form of the dominant, proud grille is emphasised by slender full-LED headlights which deliver an emphatic slim-line visual signature. The front bumper's pronounced air inlets and subtle skid plate hint at both Velar's performance and its class-leading all-terrain capability.
The fast windscreen angle intersects wîth the front axle line and flows into the Range Rover floating roof design, which can be specified in either body colour or optional Narvik Black contrast finishes. Fixed and sliding panoramic roof options highlight Velar's exceptional interior space by allowing natural light to flood in.
The pure, simple yet strong form of the bodysides is testament to Range Rover's long history of lightweight aluminium construction. The clean, unadorned surfaces are punctuated by a strong shoulder line just below the glasshouse, while a thin, sweeping black graphic flows elegantly around the body's lower reaches.
Fender vents which begin in line wîth the front axle flow backwards to the front doors, emphasising Velar's dynamic character.
The relentless focus on clean, pure lines made it essential to achieve extremely tight panel gaps, a challenge that the Design and Engineering teams have achieved wîth absolute precision.
Flush deployable door handles – a Range Rover-first – emphasise how Velar's striking design is enabled by technology. The handles, which feature subtle LED illumination, quickly deploy when the doors are unlocked via the key fob, or by pressing a discreet button set into the handle, and hinge gracefully forwards when pulled to open the doors.
They retract seamlessly into the doors when the car is locked, or at speeds above 5mph (8km/h), improving aerodynamic efficiency for improved fuel efficiency, and drawing further attention to the strikingly clean, uninterrupted form of the bodysides.
Every Velar features LED headlights as standard. As well as superior illumination and energy efficiency compared to Bi-Xenon lights, LED technology has also enabled the Designers to create the most slender headlight clusters ever fitted to a production Land Rover. They wrap dramatically around the front of the vehicle; a full-length black graphic within emphasises their narrow width. Distinctive daytime-running lights enhance the assertive road presence that all Range Rover vehicles command.
Four different LED headlight designs are available, culminating in §egmènt-first Matrix-Laser LED Headlights. The lasers provide even better visibility at night, extending the range of full beam to 550 metres. The Adaptive Front Lighting system matches the light beam to the §teering wheel angle, while the matrix technology selectively dims individual LEDs to maintain optimum light distribution and ensure that full beam can be used without dazzling oncoming traffic.
The Matrix-Laser LED headlights are also distinguished by the signature daytime running lights and Animated Direction Indicators which sweep across the lights in the intended direction of travel, improving safety.
Slimline LED fog lights further enhance Velar's technology-enabled design and are seamlessly integrated into the lower black feature line that wraps round the vehicle.
The LED taillights echo the sophistication of the headlights wîth an eye-catching 3D appearance. They are complemented by a full-length high-level stop-lamp: hidden-until-lit and wîth a clear lens, it uses light-guide technology wîth integrated micro-optics to create smooth, homogeneous light. The LED rear fog lights blend into the sweeping black contrast graphic as it reaches the rear of the vehicle, and are visible from the side.
Tailoring the perfect look
A choice of exterior design treatments enhance customer choice and makes Velar even more distinctive. R-Dynamic models receive a unique, deeper front bumper wîth enlarged apertures to increase cooling and create greater visual presence.
Burnished Copper-coloured detailing extends to the front bumper blades and fender vents, while the front grille and all Range Rover lettering is finished in Shadow Atlas Silver. The black contrast roof option lowers the visual centre of gravity and complements the Dark Grey Satin wheels.
Black and Premium exterior packs provide additional visual differentiation. The Black Pack is offered on both standard and R-Dynamic derivatives, introducing distinctive Narvik Black to the grille mesh and surround, bonnet and tailgate lettering, fender vents, tow-eye cover surround and lower bumper blade. For R-Dynamic derivatives, the bonnet vent blades, bumper aperture inserts and exhaust finishers are also finished in Narvik Black.
The Premium pack is reserved exclusively for standard Velar derivatives, and includes lower exterior trim elements finished in high-gloss Narvik Black to enhance Velar's elegant detailing. The addition of fog lamps, a tow-eye cover in Narvik Black, tow-eye cover surround in Indus Silver and lower bumper blades in Atlas Silver complete the transformation.
A range of 13 exterior colours is available: Fuji White, Narvik Black, Yulong White, Indus Silver, Corris Grey, Santorini Black, Kaikoura Stone, Byron Blue, Firenze Red, Aruba, Silicon Silver and Carpathian Grey.
For the ultimate premium appearance, a new Flux Silver satin paint finish is available exclusively for the First Edition model for the first model year from Jaguar Land Rover's Special Vehicle Operations division, and applied at the Oxford Road Technical Centre. The advanced paint features a vacuum-metallised pigment to enhance the effect of both light and shade over Velar's elegant, svelte form.
Eight distinctive wheel designs ranging from 18- to 22-inches wîth a choice of four finishes are available. Standard models are supplied wîth 18-inch alloy wheels as standard, while S upgrades to a 19-inch, SE to 20-inch and HSE 21-inch. All customers can specify to 22-inch* alloy wheels, which form part of the First Edition's comprehensive standard equipment.
1.2 The interior: a calm sanctuary
Mirroring the taut, uncluttered, and perfectly-executed exterior design, Velar's precision-crafted interior embraces the latest technology to enhance Range Rover's trademark architecture wîth a renewed focus on luxury materials, exquisite detailing, and exceptional refinement.
Positioned in the Sports-Command driving position, Velar's front seats balance performance-oriented design and support wîth opulent comfort, and offer up to 20-way adjustment and heating, cooling and massage functions. Meticulously weight-optimised and designed to liberate additional interior space, the seats have also been carefully sculpted for ease of entry and egress to and from the cabin.
The 40:20:40 rear seats offer exceptional comfort too, and are available wîth heating and electric recline options. The optional four-zone climate control and cabin air ionisation system make Velar's interior an even more comfortable place to be for all occupants.
The instrument panel's strong, horizontal beam is the defining element of Velar's interior architecture. It rakes back dramatically towards the windscreen to create the fastest angle of any Land Rover and underline Velar's dynamic driving characteristics. The slender air vents reinforce Velar's reductive, technology-enabled design.
Showcased in the centre are the two high-definition 10-inch touchscreens of the new Touch Pro Duo infotainment system. The thin capacitive polycarbonate precisely follows the subtle curvature of the instrument panel for seamless, perfectly flush surface integration. Integrating the Terrain Response and Terrain Response 2 controls into Touch Pro Duo eliminates the traditional dial and hard buttons, creating extra space in the centre console and further emphasising the visually-reductive approach that drives every aspect of Velar's design.
The infotainment system features two multi-function rotary controllers and are distinguished by their tactile, rubberised outer surface, Satin Chrome bezels and seamlessly-integrated digital display screens. The rotary transmission controller rises silently from the centre console on start-up.
In front of the driver are twin-analogue dials wîth a 5-inch TFT display between them, or, as standard from SE specification and above, a 12.3-inch Interactive Driver Display. This high-definition virtual instrument cluster delivers a rich, high-technology experience and allows the driver to prioritise key information: a two-dial layout wîth an information panel in the centre, a one-dial layout flanked by dual information displays, or a full-map view when navigation features.
Key information such as speed, turn-by-turn navigation instructions and active safety system warnings can also be displayed to the driver using the latest-generation full-colour head-up display. The virtual images projected onto the windscreen appear to hover some two metres in front of the driver, allowing the driver to quickly and easily process the information while remaining focused on the road ahead.
The §teering wheel features capacitive switches which benefit from situation-based options and even allow the driver to programme specific functions.
Authentic materials, innovative details
Authentic materials of the finest quality and contemporary finishes underline Velar's luxury status. The cockpit's distinctive horizontal architecture is celebrated wîth a new embossed Cut Diamond signature design, which flows from the instrument panel through to the door casings to emphasise the width of the spacious cabin.
The new design is subtly echoed throughout the interior: the Windsor Leather and Premium Textile seats feature a perforated interpretation, and the Cut Diamond motif forms an integral part of the stainless steel speaker frets' structure on the Meridian 17- and 23-speaker audio systems.
Únique to the luxury SÚV §egmènt, the innovative Premium Textile seat material is offered as an alternative to leather upholstery as part of the Interior Premium Textile Pack. Developed wîth Kvadrat, Europe's leading manufacturer of high-quality design textiles, this sustainable material comes in Dapple Grey and features wool-blend textile contrasted wîth a Suedecloth insert available in Light Oyster or Ebony.
The Suedecloth fibres are created from recycled plastic bottles and crafted into a textured non-woven material that's soft to the touch. An advanced coating system ensures the Premium Textile interior passes Land Rover's most rigorous tests for durability, and can be easily cleaned.
Standard models feature Suedecloth and Luxtec upholstery wîth distinctive twin-needle stitching. S and SE models upgrade to high-quality, perforated grained leather. The top HSE specification is equipped wîth luxuriously soft perforated Windsor leather, which extends to the instrument panel and door casings.
Perfectly-crafted trim finishers celebrate the natural look and texture of authentic materials. Choices include Satin Blonde Linear veneer, which is pale-stained and has a satin feel open-pore finish to give a very modern, airy character, and the prestigious Argento Pin-stripe, which is distinguished by its high-gloss finish and silver streaks to emphasise the wood grain. Another highlight is Carbon Fibre Copper weave trim, created by weaving carbon fibre and copper filaments together under a high gloss finish to signify sporting luxury.
Ambient LED lighting casts a soft glow over the interior, subtly highlighting the strong architectural lines and authentic materials for a calming atmosphere. Optional configurable ambient lighting technology offers a choice of 10 different colour options.
While refinement is the priority for any Range Rover interior, versatility remains a key strength. The inherent package-efficiency engineered into Velar's Lightweight Aluminium Architecture, together wîth the 2,874mm wheelbase delivers exceptional interior space for all occupants.
The split, sliding front centre armrest allows row-one occupants to individually adjust each half, and concealed underneath is a cubby wîth a cupholder and 4-litres of storage space. Another cupholder is located under a flush-fitting cover next to the rotary transmission controller. The glovebox, available wîth optional cooling, provides 7.5-litres of storage.
Row-one occupants have access to two ÚSB ports and there are three 12V power sockets throughout the vehicle for charging mobile devices. A further 12V socket can be specified in the front of the cabin, along wîth an additional two ÚSB ports for row-two.
Deep, wide stowage compartments in the lower door casings have been designed to accommodate 750ml drinks bottles wîth ease. The centre console provides additional storage behind the lower touchscreen – ideal for concealing smartphones and keys from view.
The luggage compartment not only delivers an impressive 632-litres of space, but is a match for some vehicles in the §egmènt above. The 40:20:40 row-two seat features a ski-flap to enables long items to be through-loaded, and wîth the rear seats folded flat, Velar provides up to 1,731-litres of room from a load space measuring 1,795mm long by 1,247mm wide. Remote release levers are located in the luggage compartment to make lowering the rear seats even more convenient.
The gesture-controlled power tailgate option makes loading bulky or heavy objects into the luggage compartment easier and more convenient: rather than reach for the keyfob or pressing the release button on the tailgate, customers have only to make a kicking gesture under the rear bumper: sensors detect this movement and trigger the tailgate to open.
Another innovative technology designed to make life easier is Land Rover's Activity Key option – a waterproof, shockproof wristband wîth integrated transponder – which allows customers to enjoy sports and outdoor pursuits such as running, cycling or kayaking without having to carry the standard key fob.
Holding the Activity Key up to the Land Rover badge on the tailgate simultaneously locks the vehicle and disables any keyfobs left inside, so they can be left securely behind while you enjoy your active lifestyle. Activity Key has no battery, so you never have to worry about changing it.
2. STATE-OF-THE ART TECHNOLOGY
Technology and innovation define Velar, exemplified by the new, state-of-the-art Touch Pro Duo infotainment system.
2.1 World debut: Touch Pro Duo infotainment system
Velar debuts the new Touch Pro Duo infotainment system, which is the most advanced system developed by Jaguar Land Rover and is truly state-of-the-art. Touch Pro Duo features two high-definition 10-inch touchscreens that form the centrepiece of the beautifully minimalist cabin, and blends a futuristic, elegant feel wîth an intuitive, engaging interface and unrivalled performance and functionality.
Located in the instrument panel's horizontal beam, the upper touchscreen's menu is divided into three panels for navigation, media and phone. Interaction is as intuitive as using a tablet or a smartphone: swiping across the screen to change between menus, pinching to zoom in and out, and wîth pressing and scrolling across the screen to pan across maps.
Each function may be individually selected and displayed on the main part of the screen to provide more detailed information and user options. A side panel provides access for up to five frequently used functions: navigation, media, phone, news and weather. A permanent menu bar in the lower portion of the screen provides easy access to the home menu, vehicle settings and parking aids.
Gently curved to lie perfectly flush wîth the surrounding structure, the upper screen can tilt through 30 degrees, allowing the driver to set it at the perfect position. The screen returns to the flush position when the ignition is switched off and automatically adjusts to the previously selected angle when the ignition is switched on again.
The lower touchscreen is integrated within the centre console and manages features including the climate control and Terrain Response functions. To make operation as easy and intuitive as possible there are no moving images and no complex menus – the touchscreen provides direct inputs to seat temperature controls, for example.
The two touchscreens are complemented by two tactile rotary controllers. These are reconfigurable to enable them to perform several functions, such as adjusting cabin air temperature, optional massage seat settings or the Terrain Response mode. Between them is a dial for controlling the audio system.
A row of capacitive switches is positioned below the rotaries to control maximum A/C and defrost settings, plus Dynamic Stability Control and Hill Descent Control functions. Lit in white when not in use, when pressed the switches illuminate in amber.
Touch Pro Duo's reductive design and outstanding performance is enabled by the very latest technologies. The HD touchscreens use optical bonding to allow a curved surface while at the same time delivering exceptional image quality: suspending the flat TFT display in an optical resin eliminates the air gaps that can otherwise cause reflections and parallax images.
An Intel quad core processor, high-speed 60GB solid-state drive and ultra-fast Ethernet network are at the heart of Touch Pro Duo's world-class performance and functionality, and together wîth the touchscreen design and rotary controllers, deliver an unrivalled user experience.Connectivity
Touch Pro Duo is also designed to keep you connected, and its Micro SIM 4G connectivity enables a host of features, functions and location-based services that make every journey easier, more enjoyable and more relaxing (standard on S and above).
Úse the online search to find your destination, and the system can also tell you if you have enough fuel to complete the journey. If not, you will be alerted and filling stations on the route that are within range will be shown on the map – tapping on one is all it takes to set it as a waypoint. Fuel prices can also be shown, and even the filling station brand.
Real-time traffic information helps you to avoid congestion, and plan alternative routes. But if you are delayed, Touch Pro Duo's Share ETA Mode can send your location and estimated time of arrival to chosen contacts via email or text message. If your journey time slips, the system can automatically send further updates.
Commute Mode learns your daily drive so that, using both historical and real-time traffic information, it can suggest alternative routes and help you to reach your destination on time.
When you approach the end of your journey, Arrival Mode shows a 360° interactive view of your destination alongside the main map display using street level imagery. If desired, the system can then find you a nearby parking space and direct you straight to it.
A route planning app enables you to programme a route in advance on a smartphone, which will then automatically be uploaded to the system once you're in the vehicle. And because Touch Pro Duo provides true door-to-door routing, it can help you complete the final stage of your journey on foot or using public transport by seamlessly transferring guidance back to your phone once you park the vehicle.
For enhanced connectivity, Touch Pro Duo also features a Wi-Fi hotspot for up to eight devices (available on S derivative and above) InControl Apps also allows owners to access compatible apps from iOS and Android devices using the system's upper touchscreen.
Customers can also interact wîth Velar remotely – from anywhere in the world. The InControl Remote app allows the owner to lock and unlock their vehicle, check how much fuel is in the tank or where the vehicle is parked using a smartphone or smartwatch. It's even possible to start the engine and set the climate control system or park heater remotely.
Secure Tracker technology allows the owner to track a stolen vehicle using the Land Rover app on their smartphone. If the vehicle is broken into or moved illegally, the app will alert the driver and the monitoring centre to help pinpoint and recover it as soon as possible. Even if the vehicle is stolen using the keys, the owner can alert the tracking call centre using the smartphone app.
Drivers gain extra peace of mind thanks to SOS Emergency call technology wîth Automatic Collision Detection and Optimised Assistance. In the event of an emergency, an SOS call notifies the emergency services of the location of the vehicle. Should the vehicle break down, Optimised Assistance transmits its GPS location and vehicle diagnostics data to a recovery company.
As well as offering unrivalled connectivity, Velar offers a choice of four premium audio systems, each one developed to integrate perfectly wîth Velar's cabin and deliver exceptional sound quality, most of all the 1,600W Signature Sound System developed wîth renowned British audio experts Meridian.
This state-of-the-art surround sound system delivers an unparalleled listening experience for all occupants through 23 perfectly placed speakers, enhanced wîth Audyssey MultEQ XTdigital audio tuning and Trifield 3D sound processing technology. These combine to produce a truly immersive experience which perfectly reproduces the original recording
Customers can also specify the fully integrated Rear Seat Entertainment system which comprises two 8-inch HD touchscreens in true 15:9 widescreen format, two remote controls and two sets of WhiteFire-connected wireless headphones.
The screens are independent, so each one can play a different movie or, where available, digital TV channel. The twin ÚSB 3.0 ports or the HDMI and HDMI/MHL connectors enable rear-seat occupants to stream media from smartphones and tablets. Front-seat occupants can select and monitor the content shown on the rear screens, and can also turn off individual screens, if desired.
2.2 Advanced driver-assistance systems
An array of advanced driver-assistance systems is fitted as standard or offered as optional equipment to make every journey in a Velar safer and more comfortable.
One of the most important technologies is Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB). A forward-facing stereo camera inside the windscreen monitors the road in front of the vehicle: if the AEB system determines that a collision wîth another vehicle or a pedestrian is imminent then full braking is triggered automatically, helping to avoid the collision altogether, or to mitigate the effects. The driver also receives visual and audible warnings before braking is initiated.
The stereo camera is also used for the Lane Departure Warning (LDW) and Lane Keep Assist (LKA) functions. By monitoring road markings and the driver's use of the indicators, these systems can help to prevent the driver from drifting out of lane: LDW can issue a haptic warning though the §teering wheel, while LKA goes further and can apply a small amount of counter-§teering to keep the vehicle in its lane. The §teering torque is easily overcome if required.
Driver Condition Monitoring measures §teering inputs, throttle and brake application and analyses lane departure and the driver's use of direction indicators. If the system's algorithms determine from the data that the driver is drowsy – for example from periods of no §teering followed by sudden, sharp inputs – a coffee cup symbol is shown in the instrument cluster to encourage them to take a break.
Traffic Sign Recognition (TSR) uses the stereo camera to read speed limit signs, which are then displayed in the instrument cluster and, if fitted, the head-up display. TSR intelligently adapts to temporary limits in roadworks, and to the lower speed limits applicable in some countries during wet weather, or if the vehicle is towing a trailer.
Reverse Traffic Detection uses radar to monitor vehicles approaching from either side of the vehicle when reversing. An orange warning illuminates in the door mirrors to alert the driver to any potential danger.
Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) wîth Queue Assist and Intelligent Emergency Braking reduces driver workload when cruising on the motorway or driving in traffic. ACC maintains a set cruising speed, or a driver-selectable gap to the vehicle ahead if the leading vehicle's speed is lower. The technology ensures the vehicle will come to a complete stop when the vehicle ahead does. If the driver then presses the accelerator, Velar will pull away and track the vehicle in front all the way up to the chosen speed setting, where conditions allow. If the system detects that a potential frontal collision wîth another vehicle may occur, it will display an alert to warm the driver to brake. If the driver doesn't react, the system will deploy the brakes to reduce the severity of the potential impact.
The 360° Parking Aid makes it easy for drivers to manoeuvre the vehicle in tight spaces. Cameras located around the car are automatically triggered when Reverse is selected, or can be manually activated, wîth a graphic appearing on the touchscreen showing an overhead view of the car. The touchscreen display and audio feedback indicates the proximity of obstacles.
Park Assist identifies suitable parallel and perpendicular parking spaces using ultrasonic sensor, and alerts the driver wîth a message in the instrument cluster. Once the driver accepts the parking location, the vehicle steers itself on both entry to and – in the case of parallel parking spaces – exit from the space while the driver just controls the accelerator, brakes and selects either Drive or Reverse.
Towing made simpler and safer
Every vehicle wearing the Land Rover badge must offer exemplary towing ability: Velar is no exception. With a towing capacity of up to 2,500kg, and technologies already proven on the new Discovery that make this inherent ability even more accessible, Velar is the most useable tow vehicle in its class.
The semi-autonomous Advanced Tow Assist function enables all drivers to perform potentially difficult reversing manoeuvres wîth ease. Instead of §teering and counter §teering as normal, the driver simply guides the trailer into position using the infotainment system's rotary controller – Advanced Tow Assist calculates all necessary §teering inputs.
First, the driver must configure the system through the touchscreen by entering key trailer details. Then, responsive trajectory lines appear on the touchscreen from the feed from cameras in the door mirrors, showing the anticipated direction of the trailer. By §teering the trailer using the infotainment system's rotary controller and by operating the pedals, the driver can reverse park trailers wîth ease because the system calculates all of the necessary §teering inputs. It will also alert the driver if the requested §teering input is excessive and could cause a jackknife.
Hitch Assist makes it easier to hook at trailer up to Velar. Úsing surround cameras, the touchscreen displays the towbar and recognises the trailer mounting point. The display then zooms in, showing a trajectory line, which responds to §teering wheel inputs to help the driver to guide the vehicle into place.
The Trailer Light Test feature enables drivers to test trailer lights without help from others by pulsing them while they are standing outside the vehicle. The system can be activated wîth a button in the luggage compartment or by using the touchscreen.
3. WORLD-CLASS ENGINEERING
Engineering integrity is at the heart of every Land Rover. Engineered in the ÚK and developed and tested in the harshest conditions around the world, Velar upholds that core philosophy. The result is a mid-size luxury SÚV that provides outstanding dynamics and refinement, unparalleled all-terrain capability and total dependability.
3.1 Outstanding capability on- and off-road
Velar's advanced chassis offers the ultimate in comfort, dynamics and all-terrain capability. The sophisticated double-wishbone front suspension follows sports car design principles, wîth knuckles and bearings engineered for particularly high stiffness to deliver exemplary §teering and handling response and precision. Aluminium is used extensively to save weight, while steel front lower control arms provide maximum durability in challenging off-road conditions.
An Integral Link rear axle wîth forged aluminium toe links and upper control arms delivers the high lateral stiffness needed for exceptional handling precision, together wîth the longitudinal compliance needed for outstanding ride comfort and refinement. Integral Link is the most sophisticated and most capable rear suspension system available, and the design is also highly space-efficient, minimising intrusion into the luggage compartment
The suspension systems also offer outstanding wheel articulation and ensure that Velar can outperform the competition no matter what the terrain. With an approach angle of up to 28.89 degrees, breakover angle of up to 23.5 degrees and a departure angle of up to 29.5 degrees, and a maximum wading depth of 650mm (600mm for coil spring suspension), Velar sets new standards for off-road capability in the mid-size SÚV §egmènt.
Velar is offered wîth coil springs as standard on four-cylinder models, and a ground clearance of 213mm. Four-corner air suspension as an option on the four-cylinder 240PS diesel and 300PS petrol, and as standard on all six-cylinder models. This system delivers truly outstanding comfort and significantly increased off-road capability.
The air suspension's ride height drops by 10mm when cruising at speeds above 65mph (105km/h) to reduce aerodynamic drag and therefore improve fuel efficiency. The Auto Access Height function automatically lowers the suspension by 40mm when the ignition is turned off, making it easier to get in and out of the vehicle.
Off-road mode increases the ride height by 46mm compared to Normal mode at speeds below 32mph (50km/h) for a class-leading ground clearance of 251mm, but automatically lowers by 18mm between 32-50mph (50-80km/h) () to provide an ideal combination of stability, comfort and ground clearance during longer journeys on rutted, unpaved roads or surfaces.
The air suspension also helps drivers when wading too. The Grounding Detection function can automatically raise the vehicle to help clear underwater obstacles which the driver may not have been able to see. The additional ground clearance can be requested by pressing the brake pedal and a button on the touchscreen. And because air suspension is self-levelling, it maintains the optimum ride height when towing or carrying heavy loads, improving occupant comfort. It also brings benefits when hitching a trailer, or when loading or unloading: controls inside the luggage compartment allow the suspension to be raised or lowered by 50mm respectively.
Adaptive Dynamics is standard on all models. By monitoring wheel movement 500 times per second, and body movements 100 times per second, the system continuously varies the damping forces at all four corners of vehicle. This ensures that suspension stiffness is optimised for the driving conditions, improving ride comfort and handling – there's even a specific calibration for off-road driving.
Configurable Dynamics: a tailored driving experience
Standard on First Edition models and available across the range, Configurable Dynamics allows the driver to tailor vehicle settings to their individual preference using the touchscreen. In Dynamic mode's default setting, throttle response is increased, gear shifts anticipate a sportier driving style, the suspension stiffens and power-§teering assistance is reduced for extra driver feedback. Configurable Dynamics allows each parameter to be individually adjusted, so increased throttle response can be combined with, for example, the default suspension setting.
Dynamic information is also displayed in the touchscreen and shows g-force, stopwatch and the throttle pedal activation, helping enthusiasts to make the most of their driving experiences.Electric Power-Assisted Steering: response and efficiency
Velar's electric power-assisted §teering (EPAS) system has been developed for exceptional driver feedback, precision and feel. Optimised friction and inertia compensation algorithms ensure completely intuitive §teering responses, and an active return system promotes a natural self-centring effect as the §teering returns to the straight-ahead position. The variable-ratio system also ensures that the driver benefits from greater responsiveness the more they turn the wheel.
EPAS improves efficiency as well as the driving experience: because it only uses energy when the wheel is turned, it can cut fuel consumption by as much as three per cent on the European combined cycle compared to hydraulic systems.
The Torque Vectoring by Braking (TVB) system, standard on all models, further enhances agility. If the system detects the onset of understeer during corner entry it can initiate light braking of the inside wheels – in particular the inside rear – to help the driver to maintain an ideal line through the corner. TVB is also beneficial at lower speeds when driving on slippery surfaces such as mud or snow.Únrivalled capability: All-Wheel Drive system and traction technologies
Velar is equipped wîth a range of advanced technology to deliver exceptional composure and agility on-road, and class-leading capability off-road.
The most significant of these is an intelligent, efficient, torque on-demand all-wheel-drive (AWD) system, which provides the optimum torque distribution to suit the conditions, whether dynamic driving on tarmac roads or pulling away on polished ice.
The system is built around a single-speed transfer case featuring a multi-plate wet clutch and a chain drive to the front axle. Designed to be compact and quiet in operation, the transfer case's main advantage is its speed: depending on conditions it can make the transition from 100 per cent rear bias to fully locked in only 165 milliseconds; transient torque delivery to the front axle can take as little as 100 milliseconds. This makes the AWD system incredibly responsive, which delivers exceptional performance in all conditions.
Torque distribution between the front and rear axles is managed by Intelligent Driveline Dynamics (IDD), a highly-sophisticated control system developed in-house. IDD takes information from a number of sensors around the vehicle, including §teering wheel angle, throttle position, yaw rate and lateral acceleration. Úsing this data, IDD continuously estimates the friction between the tyre contact patch and the surface – and how much of the available grip is being exploited.
With this level of intelligence, IDD can use both pre-emptive and reactive control strategies in order to optimise torque distribution, maximising traction and also enhancing vehicle dynamics. To make IDD even more effective, it is networked to the vehicle's Dynamic Stability Control system, Torque Vectoring System and – where fitted – the Active Locking Rear Differential.
The Active Locking Rear Differential, which is available on all six-cylinder models, also delivers benefits on- and off-road. Electronic control of the wet clutch pack means that the differential can optimise the torque distribution between the rear wheels as a function of load transfer and surface friction: this maximises traction during launch and corner exit, and when traversing challenging off-road terrains.
Land Rover's world-leading Terrain Response system allows the driver to adjust vehicle settings to suit prevailing surface conditions, wîth a choice of Eco, Comfort, Grass-Gravel-Snow, Mud-Ruts, Sand, and – on R-Dynamic models – Dynamic mode. Each alters the calibration of the engine, transmission, all-wheel drive system, suspension, and stability control systems for optimum traction and composure.
The even more advanced Terrain Response 2, standard on First Edition models and available as an option on all others, also has an automatic setting to make it even simpler for drivers to fully exploit the vehicle's capability because it automatically selects the best Terrain Response mode for any given surface.
In a Land Rover-first, the Terrain Response systems are accessed not through a dedicated controller but using the driver's reconfigurable infotainment system rotary controller, or directly through the touchscreen itself. This intelligent system integration contributes to the clean, uncluttered design of the centre console.
A comprehensive portfolio of off-road technologies supports Velar's class-leading all-terrain capability. All Terrain Progress Control (ATPC) , also standard on First Edition models and available as an option on all others, functions like a low-speed cruise control and provides added composure in adverse conditions by managing vehicle speed, allowing the driver to concentrate solely on §teering the vehicle – use of the throttle and brake is not required. The system is activated wîth the press of a button, and the desired speed set using the cruise control switches on the §teering wheel.
ATPC works in both forward and reverse gears and is operational from 2.2mph to 18mph (3.6km/h to 30km/h) (). It is particularly beneficial in challenging off-road environments where a constant crawl speed is desirable in order to maintain vehicle composure and occupant comfort.
Low Traction Launch is designed to help drivers pull away smoothly from a standstill on very slippery surfaces. Activated through the infotainment system's lower touchscreen, Low Traction Launch provides a very progressive throttle pedal calibration, reducing the possibility of wheelspin. Above 18mph(30km/h), the throttle calibration automatically reverts back to the Terrain Response setting that was previously selected.
Hill Descent Control (HDC) uses the ABS system to maintain a controlled vehicle speed on steep inclines without driver intervention. HDC incorporates Gradient Release Control to progressively release the brakes when moving away on an incline.
The latest development of the 4x4i menu offers slope information – displaying the degree of incline and front and rear camera views – as well as familiar information such as §teering wheel angle, driveline torque distribution, suspension articulation, and Wade Sensing data.3.2 Refined and efficient powertrains
Every one of the six petrol and diesel engines offered in Velar is engineered for the ideal blend of performance, refinement and efficiency and meets stringent Euro 6 emissions regulations. All are matched to smooth-shifting eight-speed automatic transmissions and all-wheel drive to deliver the effortless, composed driving experience synonymous wîth all Range Rover vehicles.Ingenium diesels: Low fuel consumption, high torque
Two versions of Jaguar Land Rover's clean, refined four-cylinder Ingenium diesel are offered, each delivering high levels of torque from low engine speeds, ensuring excellent responsiveness and acceleration whenever the driver demands it. Features such as the highly rigid crankcase, twin balancer shafts and active fluid-filled engine mounts ensure superb refinement.
Both of these 2.0-litre engines share the same inherently efficient, low friction design, and benefit from features such as a split-cooling system and electronically-controlled coolant pump for rapid warm-up and therefore reduced fuel consumption. Variable exhaust cam timing helps the aftertreatment system to reach operating temperature as quickly as possible, reducing emissions.
And both feature state-of-the-art technologies to cut NOx emissions. The sophisticated exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) system uses a cooled low-pressure circuit in addition to a high-pressure circuit: this reduces pumping losses, and therefore increases efficiency still further, and also reduces peak combustion temperatures to help reduce the formation of NOx in the cylinders.
The selective catalytic reduction (SCR) system cuts tailpipe emissions of NOx to very low levels. The system injects AdBlue diesel exhaust fluid into the exhaust gas, where it reacts wîth the NOx and converts it into harmless nitrogen and water, ensuring that the Ingenium diesels comply wîth the stringent limits of Euro 6.
The most efficient version of the engine, known as D180, features a 1,800bar common-rail system and a single variable geometry turbocharger, ensuring clean, quiet efficient combustion and excellent response from low engine speeds. Developing 180PS and maximum torque of 430Nm from 1,750rpm, this engine delivers flexible performance and outstanding efficiency: acceleration from 0-60mph in 8.4 seconds (0-100km/h takes 8.9 seconds) , wîth fuel consumption and CO2 emissions of 52.5mpg (5.4-litres/100km) and 142g/km respectively on the European combined cycle.
For greater performance without sacrificing efficiency, drivers can choose the more powerful Ingenium diesel: the D240. Equipped two turbochargers – Jaguar Land Rover's first application of a series-sequential boosting system – and a 2,200bar common-rail system, this engine produces 240PS and an exceptional 500Nm of torque from just 1,500rpm. This enables acceleration from 0-60mph in only 6.8 seconds (0-100km/h 7.3 seconds. Figures of 48.7mpg (5.8-litres/100km) and 154g/km CO2 are equally impressive.Extraordinary torque: V6 diesel wîth 700Nm
The latest 3.0-litre V6 diesel – the D300 – delivers benchmark refinement wîth exceptional efficiency and outstanding performance, thanks to a potent 300PS and astonishing maximum torque of 700Nm. This remarkable engine can take Velar from 0-60mph in only 6.1 seconds (0-100km/h in 6.5 seconds) on the way to a maximum speed of 150mph (241km/h). Fuel consumption and emissions figures are 44.1mpg (6.4-litres/100km) and 167g/km CO2.
This combination of power and efficiency is enabled by a package of advanced technologies. The 2,000bar piezo common-rail system ensures highly precise injection for optimised atomisation and mixing of the fuel droplets, boosting output and reducing emissions.
Response from the innovative parallel-sequential turbocharging system has been improved wîth highly optimised compressor wheel, turbine and variable nozzle designs, delivering even stronger torque output at lower engine speeds. State-of-the-art ceramic ball bearings are used in the primary turbo to reduce friction, resulting in an even more rapid build-up of torque and truly effortless acceleration.
Like the four-cylinder Ingenium diesel engines, this V6 is equipped wîth both high-pressure EGR and cooled low-pressure EGR systems and an SCR system to cut NOx emissions and ensure Euro 6 compliance.Four-cylinder Ingenium petrol engines: performance and efficiency
Velar is one of the first applications for Jaguar Land Rover's new 2.0-litre four-cylinder Ingenium petrol engines, designed to offer smooth, refined performance. Technologies including an integrated exhaust manifold, 200bar direct injection system and twin-scroll turbocharger are key to the engines' responsiveness and efficiency.
The engines also feature electrohydraulic control of the inlet valves. This cutting-edge technology enables variable valve lift, so load control is managed primarily by the intake valves rather than the throttle. This reduces pumping losses and provides unmatched flexibility and control over airflow into the combustion chambers, improving power and torque, increasing fuel efficiency and reducing emissions.
Known as the P250, the first of the two new petrol engines develops peak power of 250PS and high maximum torque of 365Nm, which is maintained from just 1,200rpm to 4,500rpm. This means that Velar can accelerate from 0-60mph in 6.4 seconds (0-100km/h in 6.7 seconds) and return an impressive 37.2mpg (7.6-litres/100km) and 173g/km CO2 on the European combined cycle.
The most powerful version – the P300 – is rated at 300PS, making it the most powerful four-cylinder engine ever used in a Land Rover vehicle. It generates a maximum torque of 400Nm, delivering exceptional response at all times. This high-performance engine will be available later in the year.Exceptional performance: Supercharged V6 petrol engine
The ultimate engine option for the most demanding drivers is the 3.0-litre supercharged V6. Known as the P380, this all-aluminium petrol engine is equipped wîth a Twin-Vortex supercharger, direct injection and dual-independent variable-camshaft timing to deliver instantaneous response from idle right up to the redline. Counter-rotating balancer shafts minimise vibration for exceptional refinement.
The result is an outstanding 380PS at 6500rpm and 450Nm of torque – enough to accelerate the vehicle from 0-60mph in just 5.3 seconds (0-100km/h 5.7 seconds) and on to an electronically-limited top speed of 155mph (250km/h). An impressive 30.1mpg (9.4-litres/100km) and 214g/km CO2 on the European combined cycle underline this powerful engine's exceptional breadth of capability.
The unique exhaust note has been meticulously tuned to deliver an engaging but discreet confirmation of the power available to the driver on full throttle, and be superbly refined and relaxing at a cruise.Smooth and responsive eight-speed automatic transmissions
Every Velar is equipped wîth a responsive and smooth eight-speed ZF automatic transmission wîth paddleshift controls. Four-cylinder engines are matched to the 8HP 45 transmission, which feature an integral pendulum damper. This device dramatically reduces the booming and vibration typically experienced when running in high gears at low engine speeds, and therefore contributes to Velar's low fuel consumption and quiet, refined cabin.
The six-cylinders are paired wîth the 8HP 70 transmission, which is engineered to manage the higher torque ratings of these larger displacement engines. All engines benefit from bespoke transmission calibrations, ensuring optimum fuel efficiency and the most rewarding and intuitive shift characteristics.3.3 Lightweight Aluminium Architecture: stiff, strong, safe
Velar's aluminium-intensive monocoque body is developed using Jaguar Land Rover's Lightweight Aluminium Architecture. This modular design, which features an intelligent mix of materials, is fundamental to Velar's refinement, efficiency and all-terrain capability. Aluminium alloys account for more than 81 per cent of the body-in-white – a figure no competitor can match.
Carefully selected grades and types of materials are specified throughout the structure to deliver the optimum balance of strength, stiffness and weight. The use of 6000-series high-strength aluminium alloy bodysides enabled a reduction in panel thickness from 1.5mm to 1.1mm, saving weight without compromising strength. The aluminium roof helps to lower the centre of gravity, improving ride and handling. High-pressure die castings are used to form highly complex parts such as the front suspension turrets.
High-strength steels are used for selected rear body sections, and are joined to the adjacent aluminium panels wîth self-piercing rivets and structural adhesive. This clean and energy-efficient joining technology contributes to the body's high torsional stiffness.
Lightweight magnesium alloys are used to make the front-end carrier and cross-car beam, while the tailgate is made from advanced composite materials.
Velar's body structure also delivers high levels of crash protection safety was developed to meet the most demanding crash tests regulations worldwide. The protection afforded by the extremely rigid passenger cell is complemented by a restraints system featuring six airbags: driver and passenger airbags, side airbags that deploy from the front seats and curtain airbags spanning the front and rear seats.
Pedestrian impact protection was a priority too, and the material grade and form of the aluminium bonnet were developed to ensure progressive absorption of energy and optimised clearance from hard points in the engine compartment.Aerodynamically-efficient: the most streamlined Land Rover
Velar's aluminium-intensive form is not just light and stiff: it's also exceptionally streamlined. Close collaboration from the outset between the Design and Engineering teams, together wîth exhaustive computational fluid dynamics simulation and wind tunnel testing, delivered a drag coefficient from just 0.32. This makes Velar the most aerodynamic Land Rover, and contributes significantly to its exceptional refinement and fuel efficiency.
Every last detail has been honed in order to let Velar pass through the air wîth minimal resistance: for example, even the ridge on the taillights has been designed induce clean separation of airflow from the bodysides, which in turn results in a cleaner wake structure and therefore reduce drag. Specially-designed air channels in the rear spoiler both cut drag and the accumulation of dirt on the rear screen – by up to 90 per cent.
Active vanes for the lower cooling aperture remain closed during the engines' warm up phase, allowing it to reach operating temperature more quickly. But the vanes also close in conditions when additional cooling is no longer required – such as a steady-state cruise – which also reduces drag. Apertures in the front bumper direct air around the front wheels to reduce turbulence, contributing to further drag reductions.
The flow of air around the vehicle has been optimised in terms of lift too: as a result, the lift balance front-to-rear is an ideal 50:50, helping to further improve stability and §teering feel at higher speeds, delivering even greater driver confidence.Source - Land Rover
Following the aftermath of World War II in 1947, the Land Rover was created by the Rover Company that (prior to the war) had produced luxury vehicles. Immediately following the war, luxury vehicles were no longer in demand, and raw materials were strictly rationed to companies building industrial equipment or construction materials, or products widely exported to earn essential foreign exchange for the country. The Series are broken down to I, II, and III to differentiate them from later models and were off-road cars influenced by the US-built Willy's Jeep.
All three models had the option of a rear power takeoff for accessories and could be started with a front hand crank. The Rover featured leaf-sprung suspension with selectable two or four-wheel drive and the Stage 1 featured permanent 4WD. The Rover company was forced to move into a large 'shadow factory' in Solihull, near Birmingham, England after their original factory in Coventry was bombed during the war. Originally built to construct aircraft, the factory was now empty but to begin car production there from scratch wouldn't be a financially viable option.
Plans were made to produce a small, economical concept called the M-Type and few prototypes were made, but it was found too expensive to produce. Land Rover's chief designer; Maurice Wilks, came up with a concept to produce a light agricultural and utility vehicle, with an emphasis on agricultural use, similar to the Willy's Jeep utilized in the war. Wilks' design added a power take-off (PTO) feature since there was an open gap between jeeps and tractors in the market. The original concept; a cross between a light truck and a tractor, was quite similar to the Unimog, which was developed in Germany at the same time.
The first Land Rover prototype was built on a Jeep chassis and used the gearbox and engine out of a Rover P3 saloon car. It had a very distinctive feature; the steering wheel was mounted into the middle of the car; so it became known as the 'centre steer'. To save on steel which was rationed at the time, the bodywork was hand-made out of an aluminum/magnesium called Birmabright. Since paint was also in short supply the first production vehicles were painted army surplus green paint. Led by engineer Arthur Goddard, the first pre-production Land Rovers were developed in late 1947.
Just like a tractor would drive farm machinery, the PTO drives from the front of the engine and from the gearbox to the center and rest of the vehicle. The vehicle was also tested plowing and performing other agricultural chores before the emphasis on tractor-like usage decreased and center steering proved impractical in use. At this point the bodywork was simplified to reduce production time and costs, the steering wheel was mounted off to the side like normal vehicles, and a larger engine was fitted, together with a specifically designed transfer gearbox to replace the jeep unit. All of these updates resulted in a vehicle that didn't utilize a single Jeep component, was shorter than its American inspiration, but heavier, wider, faster and still retained the PTO drives.
Originally the concept was designed to be in production a short 2 or 3 years to gain some export orders and cash flow for the Rover Company so it could restart up-market car production. Once production started though, it was greatly outsold by the off-road Land Rover, which developed into its own brand that today remains successful. A lot of the rugged design features that have made the Land Rover design such a success were a result of Rover's drive to simplify the tooling required for the vehicle and to use the minimum amount of rationed materials. The aluminum alloy bodywork has been retained throughout production despite it being more pricy than a conventional steel body, along with the distinctive flat body panels with only simple, constant-radius curves. Also remaining simple is the sturdy box-section ladder chassis, which on Series cars was made up from four strips of steel welded at each side to form a box, making a more conventional U or I-section frame.
Unveiled at the Amsterdam Motor Show, the Land Rover Series I began production in 1948 and continued for 10 years. Originally designed for farm and light industrial use, the Series 1 featured a steel box-section chassis and an aluminum body. Beginning as a single model offering, the Land Rover from 1948 until '51 used an 80 inch wheel base and a 1.6-liter petrol engine that produced around 50 bhp. The 4-speed gearbox from the Rover P3 was utilized with a brand new 2-speed transfer box. Much like several Rover cars of the time, the Series 1 incorporated an unusual 4-wheel drive system with a freewheel unit. Allowing a form of permanent 4WD this disengaged the front axle from the manual transmission on the overrun. The freewheel could be locked in place by a ring-pull mechanism in the driver's footwell to produce a more traditional 4WD. The Series 1 was a basic car, with tops for the doors and a roof of canvas or metal was an optional extra. The lights moved from a position behind the grill to protruding through the grille in 1950.
Since not all consumers would want a Land Rover with the most minimalistic of interiors so Land Rover launched a second body option in 1949 dubbed the 'Station Wagon'. The Wagon was fitted with a body built by Tickford; a coachbuilder known for their work with Rolls-Royce and Lagonda. With seating for up to seven people, the bodywork was wooden-framed and in comparison to standard Land Rover's, the Tickford featured leather seats, a one-piece laminated windscreen, a heater, interior trim, a tin-plate spare wheel cover and other options. Unfortunately the wooden construction made them pricy to produce and tax laws made them even worse since the Tickford was taxed as a private car and attracted high levels of Purchase Tax. Because of this, less than 700 Tickfords were sold and all but 50 were exported. Today these early Station Wagons are highly collectible.
The petrol engine in the Series 1 was replaced with a larger 2.0-liter I4 unit in 1952 with a 'Siamese bore' which meant that were no water passages between the pistons. The uncommon semi-permanent 4WD system was replaced during 1950 with a more conventional setup, with drive to the front axle being taken through a simple dog clutch. The legal status of the Land Rover was clarified around this time as well, meaning it was exempt from purchase tax.
Unfortunately this also meant that the vehicle with limited to a speed of 30 mph on British roads. Following a charge with exceeding this limit by a Land Rover owner, and an appeal to the Law Lords, the Land Rover's classification was changed to a 'multi-purpose vehicle' which was only to be classed as a commercial vehicle if used for commercial purposes. Today this classification continues to apply today with Land Rovers registered as commercial vehicles being restricted to a max speed of 60 mph (compared to the maximum 70mph for normal cars) in Britain, though this rule is rarely upheld.
Big changes came to the model in 1954 with the 80 inch wheelbase model replaced by an 86 inch wheelbase model and 107 inch 'Pick Up' version introduced. The additional wheelbase was added behind the cab area to provide extra load space.
The following year the first five-door model 'Station Wagon' was introduced on the 107 inch chassis and featured seating for up to ten people. The 86 inch model was a three-door vehicle with room for up to seven people. Very different from previous Tickford models, these new station wagons were being built with simple metal panels and bolt-together construction instead of the complicated wooded structure of the older Station Wagon. Dual purposed, the Station Wagons could be used as commercial vehicles as people-carries and also by private users. Much like the Tickford version, the wagons came with basic interior trim and equipment such as roof vents and interior lights.
The first expansion of the Land Rover range began with the Station Wagons. They were fitted with a 'Safari Roof' which consisted of a second roof skin fitted on top of the car. The roof kept the inside cool in hot temperatures and reduced condensation in cold weather. Vents fitted into the roof added ventilation to the interior. Station wagons were based on the same chassis and drive-trains as the standard vehicles, they carried different chassis numbers, unique badging and were advertised in separate brochures. Unlike the original Wagon, the new in-house versions were very popular.
To make room for the new diesel engine, the wheelbase was extended by 2 inches to 88 inches and 109 inches to accommodate the new diesel engine, which was an option the following year. With the exception of the 107 Station Wagon, which would never be fitted with a diesel, this change was made to all models and would eventually be the final series I in production.
For 1957 the 'spread bore' petrol engine was debuted, followed closely by a brand new 2.0 liter Diesel engine, that even though it had similar capacity, it wasn't related to the petrol engines used. The petrol engines at the time used the old-fashioned inlet-over-exhaust valve arrangement, while the diesel utilized the more modern overhead layout. This engine was one of the first high-speed diesels developed for road use, producing 52 hp at 4,000 rpm. The wheelbase was increased from 86 to 88 inches for the short-wheelbase models, and from 107 to 109 inches on the long-wheelbase, since the engine was slightly longer than the original chassis allowed. These extra two inches were in front of the bulkhead to accommodate the new diesel engine. For the next 25 years these dimensions were used on all Land Rovers.
In 1958 the Series II Land Rover was debuted and continued its production run until '61. It came in 88 inch and 109 inch wheelbases. The first Land Rover to receive consideration from Rover's styling department; Chief Stylist David Bache produced the well-known 'barrel side' waistline to cover the car's wider track and improved design of the truck cab variant, introducing the curved side windows and rounded roof still used today on current Land Rovers. The first car to utilize the famous 2.25-liter petrol engine, though the first 1,500 short wheelbase models kept the 52 hp 2.0 liter petrol engine from the Series 1. The larger petrol engine produced 72 hp and was closely related to the 2.0 liter diesel unit still in use today. Until the mid-1980s this engine became the standard Land Rover unit when diesel engines became more popular.
The 109-inch Series II Wagon introduced a 12-seater option on top of the standard 10-seater layout. This model was constructed basically to take advantage of UK tax laws, by which a car with 12 seats or more was classed as a bus, and was exempt from Purchase Tax and Special Vehicle Tax. This made the 12-seater Series II model less expensive than the 10-seater version, and also cheaper than the 7-seater 88 inch Station Wagon. For decades the 12-seater layout remained a popular favorite, being retained on the later Series and Defender variants until 2002, when it was dropped. The abnormal status of the 12-seater continued until the end, and these vehicles were classed as minibuses and could use bus lanes and could be exempt from the London Congestion Charge.
There was a slight bit of over-lap between Series I and Series II production. Early Series II 88 inch vehicles were fitted with the old 2-liter petrol engine to use up existing stock from production of the Series I 107-inch Station Wagon continued until late 1959. This was due to continued demand from export markets and to allow the production of Series II components to reach the highest level.
The Series IIA Land Rover was introduced in 1961 and continued in production until 1971 and was quite difficult to distinguish from the SII. Slight cosmetic changes were made from the previous series, but most of the big changes were made under the hood with the addition of the new 2.25-liter Diesel engine. The factory offered body configurations ranging from short-wheelbase soft-top to the first-class five-door station wagon. The 2.6 liter straight-six petrol engine was introduced in 1967 for use in the long-wheelbase models, the larger engine complemented by standard-fit servo-assisted brakes. 811 of these models were NADA (North American Dollar Area) truck, which were the only long-wheelbase models produced for the American and Canadian markets. From February 1969 the headlamps moved into the wings on all models and the sill panes were redesigned to be shallower a few months later.
Considered to be the most stalwart Series model ever constructed, the Series IIA is also the type of classic Land Rover that featured strongly in the general public's opinion of the Land Rover as it appeared in popular films and TV documentaries set in Africa throughout the 1960's. One of these examples was 'Born Free'.
Land Rover celebrated its 20th Birthday in February 1968, just a few months after its manufacturer had been subsumed, under government pressure, into the Leyland Motor Corporation, with total production to date just shy of 600,000, of which more than 70% had been exported. Sales of utility Land Rovers arrived at their peak in 1969-1970 during the Series IIA production run, when sales of over 60,000 Land Rovers a year were recorded. The Land Rover took over numerous world markets, as well as record sales, in Australia in the 1960's, the Land rover held 90% of the 4X4 market.
1963 brought about the Series IIA FC Land Rover, which was based on the Series IIA 2.25 liter petrol engine and 109 inch chassis, with the cab positioned over the engine to allow more load space. Export vehicles were the first Land Rovers to receive the 2.6 liter petrol engine. Most models had an ENV rear axle while a matching front axle came later. To provide additional flotation for this heavy car were large 900x16 tires on deep-dish wheel rims. Slightly underpowered for the increased load capacity, most of these vehicles had a hard-working life. Less than 2,500 models were constructed, and most had a utility body. Surviving examples often have custom bodywork, and with an upgraded power-train, they can be used as a small motor-home.
Produced from 1966 the Series IIB FC was similar to the Series IIA Forward Control but added the 2.25-liter diesel engine as an option. The standard engine for this model was the 2.6-liter engine, and the 2.25-liter engine was only available for export. Designed by ENV, heavy duty wide-track axles were fitted to improve vehicle stability, along with a front anti-roll bar and updated rear springs which were mounted above the axle instead of below it. During this process the wheelbase was increased to 110 inches. In 1974 production of the IIB FC was ended when Land-Rover reorganized its vehicle range. Many of the components from this line were also used on the '1 Ton' 109 inch vehicle.
The Land Rover Series III line was introduced in 1971 and ran until 1985 it had the same body and engine options as the previous IIA, including station wagons and the 1 Ton versions. Only minor changes were made from the IIA to the Series III. The Series III is the most common Series car, with 440,000 of the type built from 1971 to 1985. From 1968 onward, the headlights were moved to the wings on late production IIA models and remained in this position for the Series III. The traditional grille from the Series I, II and IIA was replaced with a plastic one for the Series III model.
Compressions were raised from 7:1 to 8:1 on the 2.25-liter engine, increasing the power slightly. During the production run for the III, the 1,000,000th Land Rover rolled off the production line in 1976. Numerous changes were made during the Series III production run in the later part of its life as Land Rover updated their design to meet the increasing design competition. The Series III was the initial model to feature synchromesh on all four gears though some late H-suffix SIIA models had used the all-synchro box.
The simple metal dashboard of earlier models was redesigned to accept a new molded plastic dash, in keeping with early 1970s trends in automotive interior design, both in safety and use of more state-of-the-art materials. The instrument cluster was moved from its centrally located position over to the driver's side. Long-wheelbase Series III cars had the Salisbury rear axle as standard, though some late SIIA 109-inch cars had them too.
For the 1980 model year, the 4-cylinder 2.25 liter engines were updated with five-bearing crankshafts to increase strength in heavy duty work. At the same time the axles, transmission and wheel hubs were redesigned for increased strength. This was the result of a series of updates to the transmission that had been made since the 1960's to deal with the common problem of the rear axle half-shafts breaking in heavy usage. Part of this problem was due to the design of the shafts themselves. The half shafts can be removed quickly and efficiently without even having to jack the vehicle off the ground due to the fully floating design of the rear wheel hubs. Unfortunately the tendency for commercial operators to overload their cars heightened this flaw which tainted the Series Land Rovers in numerous export markets and established a negative reputation even to today. This is despite the '82 redesign which all but solved the problem.
Numerous trim options were also introduced this year to make the interior of the car more comfortable. An all new 'County' spec Station Wagon Land Rover was introduced in both 88-inch and 109-inch types. These models featured all-new cloth seats from the Leyland T-45 Lorry, tinted glass, soundproofing kits and other 'soft' options designed to appeal to the luxury driver.
Also new this year was the High Capacity Pick -Up to the 109 inch chassis, with a load bay that offered 25% more cubic capacity than the standard pick-up style. Popular with public utility companies and building contractors, the HCPU came with heavy-duty suspension.
From 1979 until 1985 the Stage 1; which refers to the first stage of investment by the British Government in the company to improve Land Rover and Range Rover productions, was built utilizing some of the same components as the Range Rover and 101 Forward Control, such as LT95 gearbox and 3.5-liter Rover V8 petrol engine. The engine was detuned to 91 hp from the 135BHP that the Range Rover of the time featured. The Stage 1 was available in a 109-inch and 88-in wheelbase. The use of the Range Rover engine and drive train made it the only Series car that had permanent four-wheel drive.
Produced from 1968 until 1977, the 1 Ton 109 inch was basically a Series IIB Forward Control built with a standard 109 inch body, featuring a 2.6 liter petrol engine, ENV front and rear axles and a lower ratio gearbox, though some late IIAs were fitted with ENV axles in front and Salisbury on the rear. Later series IIIs had a Rover type front axle with up-rated differential. Unique to the model, the chassis frame featured drop-shackle suspension very similar to the military series Land Rovers. Standard feature was 900x16 tires and these machines were typically used by utility companies and breakdown/towing firms. Only 170 IIA and 238 Series IIIs were constructed for the home marked. Even fewer examples were on the export markets, making this model the rarest type of Land-Rover ever constructed.
The Australian market has always been a big fan for Land Rovers of all types, but especially the utility models. In the late 1940s 80-inch Series I models were sold to the Australian government for work on civil engineering projects such as road construction and dams, which brought the car back to the buying public's attention. Very large sales followed in the Australian market and in the 1950's Land Rover began to establish factories in Australia to build CKD kits shipped from the Solihull, UK factory. Through the 1960s the Land Rover continued to sell strongly in Series II guise, commanding around 90% of the off-road market. Nearly every farm had at least one Land Rover.
In the early 1970s the Series III continued successfully, but halfway through the decade the sales began to decline. Partly due to a large export deal to Japan relied on the subsequent import of Japanese vehicles and others, along with the increasingly poor quality of the components shipped from UK. Land Rover's once high dominance slipped. An Australian issue was the always-limited supply of new Land Rovers. The Leyland factory never had the capacity to meet possible demand and supply and the manufacturing process was restricted by having to import almost the entire vehicle in kit form from Britain.
This long process led to a long waiting list developing for the Leyland product while commercial operators could receive Japanese vehicles very quickly. Other Land Rover issues were the same throughout its export markets comparing it to Japanese competition; the Land Rover was under-powered, unreliable and inferior with a poor ride quality, though the off-road ability was superior. Japanese vehicles were also less likely to rust and didn't feature the low-quality steel in comparison to the Land Rover. This turned off buyers, and by 1983 with the introduction of the One Ten, the Toyota Land Cruiser became the best-selling 4X4 in Australia.
Land Rover Australia went through some updates in the early 1980s in an attempt to combat this sales decline. Land Rover fit the V8 petrol engine in the 1979 'Stage One', Australia also received the same car with the option of a 3.9-liter 89 hp 4-cylinder Isuzu diesel engine. This update made a valiant effort to slow the sales decline, but unfortunately all of the other Land Rover shortcomings overwhelmed the vehicle. The One Ten was also available with this engine along with a turbocharged version producing in excess of 100 hp powered the military 6X6.
The Series Land Rovers were used in vast number by the British Army, and today continued to use the modern Defender versions. Nearly as soon as it was launched in 1948 the British Army tested the 80-inch Series I Land Rover. At the time, the Army was more concerned with developing a specially designed military utility 4X4 (the Austin Champ). Unfortunately the Champ proved too complicated, heavy and unreliable in battlefield conditions.
So the Army looked in the Land Rover direction and in the late 1940's the Ministry of Defense was interested in the standardization of its vehicles and equipment. He wanted to fit Rolls-Royce petrol engines to all its vehicles. A variety of Series I Land Rovers were fitted with Rolls-Royce B40 4-cylinder engine, with a modified 81 inch wheelbase. Unfortunately the engine was too heavy and had little power, the slow revving stunted the performance and produced torque that the Rover gearbox could only just cope with. Rover convinced the MOD that the standard 1.6-liter engine would be enough since they were only ordering a small amount. From late 1949 the MOD began ordering Land Rovers in batches, starting at 50 vehicles, but increasing this amount to 200 each batch by the mid 1950s.
Deployed to the Korean War and the Suez Crisis, the Land Rover became standard light military vehicles throughout the Commonwealth.
Throughout the 1960s though, more and more specialized versions were developed. Along with the standard 'GS' (General Service) vehicles, a common variant was the 'FFR' (Fitted For Radio) was introduced which had 24-volt electrics and a large engine-powered generator to power on-board radios. Ambulances were also introduced on the 109-inch Series II chassis. The 'Pink Panther' was a well-known version dubbed the LRDPV (Long-Range Desert Patrol Vehicle), it was painted a distinctive light pink sand camouflage. These 109-inch Series IIs were stripped of windscreens and doors and fitted with grenade launchers, a machine gun mounting ring, and long-range fuel tanks and water tanks. These models were used by the SAS for desert patrolling and special operations.
The British Army had acquired around 9,000 Series III models by the late 1970s, which were basically a special 'Heavy Duty' version of the 109-inch Soft Top. These vehicles had improved suspension components and a different chassis cross-member design. These were produced in 12-volt 'GS' models and 24-volt 'FFR' versions. A very small number were 88-inch GS and FFR models, but mostly the Army used the Air-Portable ½ ton, 88-inch 'Lightweight' version. The Lightweight was in use by numerous armies worldwide. In Europe even the Danish Army and the Dutch Landmacht utilized the Land-Rover Lightweight. Rather than the petrol engine, the Dutch and Danish had diesel engine and rather than the canvas top the Dutch ones had PVS tops like the modern Land Rover Wolf.
In Addition, there was also 101-inch Forward Control models; 109-inch FV18067 ambulances constructed by Marshall Aerospace of Cambridge. Both the Royal Navy and the Royal Air Force also acquired and maintained smaller Land Rover fleets during the 1960's through 1970s. The RAFs used 88-inch models for liaison, communications, airfield tractor duties and personnel transports. The Royal Navy's fleet was small and consisted mainly of GS-spec and Station Wagon versions for cargo transport and personnel. All British military Land Rovers utilized the 2.25-liter 4-cylinder petrol engine, though various overseas customers specified the 2.25-liter diesel unit instead.
Minerva of Belgium produced a car dubbed a Standard Vanguard, which was produced in Belgium under license of the Standard Motor Company. In the spring of 1951 the head of Minerva, Monsieur van Roggen contacted the Rover Company when Belgium's army was in need of a lightweight 4X4 vehicle. In 1952 the Minerva-Land Rover was produced.
The Rover Company allowed Minerva to produce Land Rovers under license to Rober and supplied technical support for Minerva. Rover Assistant Chief Engineer and head of Land Rover development; Arthur Goddard, was in charge of approving the updates Minerva wanted to make to the Rover, in addition to setting the factory up to assemble the vehicles.
Land Rover has claimed that in 1992, nearly 70% of all the vehicles they had constructed were still in use today.By Jessica Donaldson