Tata Motors-owned Land Rover has taken 6,500 orders for its new Evoque which is due to reach showrooms in September.

Brand director John Edwards added that the company also has 100,000 "hot prospects" for the baby Range Rover.

Edwards said: "The Evoque is a very important model for us because it is going to attract a whole new set of customers to the brand."

He also believes the Evoque will help Land Rover hit record sales this year. "This car is the first step in the next stage of Land Rover's development," he said.

"Our vision is to be the gold standard in the SUV market, the benchmark brand."

Last year Land Rover grew its sales by 26% over 2009 to 180,000 vehicles. Edwards expects this pace of growth to continue, particularly in the emerging markets of Brazil, China, India and Russia.

He added that the company has "very significant" growth plans and Jaguar Land Rover is taking on an additional 1,000 engineers and designers at its headquarters at Gaydon near Birmingham.

A further 1,500 jobs are being created at the Halewood factory on Merseyside where the Evoque will be assembled.