EXCLUSIVE: New Range Rover & restyled Freelander imminent
A spokesperson for Jaguar Land Rover has told just-auto that a facelifted Freelander/LR2 will be revealed at next month's Moscow motor show, to be followed by a new Range Rover at the Paris show.
"The global debut of the all-new Range Rover will take place at the Paris motor show", the spokesperson stated, adding that "the revised Freelander will make its global debut at Moscow" when specifically asked if rumours of both these debuts were true.
The second generation Freelander (LR2 in North America) was launched at the London motor show in 2006 with UK sales starting in December of that year. The vehicle is built at the Halewood plant on Merseyside in the northwest of England, with additional assembly taking place at Tata Motors' Chikhli (Pimpri) plant near Pune from June 2011. The updated model debuting in Moscow will be the vehicle's second facelift.
The new Range Rover to follow at the Paris show in late September is, on the other hand, a truly new design, though Land Rover is not expected to give the model anything like a revolutionary change of styling. The fourth generation model should use a new, relatively lightweight platform.
Production of both the new Range Rover and revised Freelander/LR2 is expected to get underway at the relevant UK plants from the fourth quarter. Next year should see a second generation Range Rover Sport launched - camouflaged prototypes have recently been photographed undergoing testing.
These new models can only further help Land Rover's ongoing worldwide sales surge. Tata Motors recently reported the brand's global sales for June were up 49% year on year to a record 24,386 units.
Last month's results helped lift Land Rover sales for the year to date to am impressive 71,678 vehicles, a 41% improvement over the first half of 2011. The strengthening UK and US markets continue to play twin roles in the brand's success, but the main reason is the ongoing success of the Range Rover Evoque in all global markets.
Author: Glenn Brooks