Author: ROBIN ROBERTS
The 4th generation Range Rover will be the ultimate in 4×4 luxury, and yet there is a dim echo of the original Land Rover built just after WW2. Like it’s ancestor, the Range Rover will be built almost entirely from aluminium. Completely re-engineered, the new Range Rover has an aluminium monocoque body with the world’s largest bodyside pressing. Extensive use is made of lightweight pressings, castings and extrusions, all riveted or bonded together to reduce corrosion and enhance strength.
The result is a much lighter body shell than ever before and despite being a millimetre under five metres long it weighs only 12kg more than a Mini Countryman and it is lighter than the Audi Q5 and BMW 3-Series.
Reduced weight will enhance both on-road and off-road ability, and improve acceleration and even fuel consumption.
The big Ranger weighs less than much small cars like Audi’s Q5 and the BMW 3-Series
It is said to be roomier inside than the previous models and it will boast cutting edge electronics and high equipment levels.
Under the skin, the new car gets a ‘5th generation’ air-suspension system. A new air-compressor increases performance allowing better control of the pressure in the air springs.
Off-road, ground clearance has been improved by 18mm, to 296mm front, 310mm rear and the 597mm of wheel travel and wading depth has increased by 200mm to 900mm, with the car now ‘breathing’ via gap between bonnet and wing. The new-generation Terrain Response 2 system analyses the terrain and can switch automatically between the five off-road settings.
The permanent all-wheel drive works through a new 8-speed ZF automatic gearbox, which has a wider ratio spread and only uses the torque convertor for launch, before locking up for maximum efficiency. Brembo six-pot callipers and 380mm discs are fitted to the front wheels and it gets a new electric power steering system. The Mk4 also has a 3500kg towing capacity.
Order books are now open with prices from £71,295.