Look back at the birth of the original Land Rover | How Land Rover has driven adventure and scientific exploration | GQ Editor Dylan Jones discusses inspiration with Chief Design Officer Gerry McGovern | Exploring the potential impact of electrification and connected vehicles | Tackling the 999 steep steps up to Heaven’s Gate in China
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XXXXXXX LEFT 1997 | Hill Descent Control debuts on new Freelander 1998 | Second-gen Discovery launch at Paris Motor Show 2001 | Freelander on sale in the USA, Japan & Middle East | Oct: 3 millionth Land Rover is a Freelander V6 01 02 03 01 At home anywhere: The first Discovery in its right element 02 Off-road with a difference! The ‘floating’ Discovery appeared at Cowes Week 1990 03 Discoverys were part of the 2003 and 2006 Land Rover G4 Challenges, an achievement celebrated with Tangier Orange special edition models 01 03 PHOTOGRAPHY: XXXXXXXXX XXXXXXX XXXXXXXXX 56
AGE OF DISCOVERY 2003 | First G4 Challenge uses Discovery V8s | ‘G4’ special edition offered in Tangiers Orange 2004 | Discovery 3 launched with Terrain Response 2006 | Freelander 2 launched at British Motor Show technology such as Hill Descent Control. This was proven by the V8-powered Discoverys driven by competitors in the first Land Rover G4 Challenge in 2003, that was supported by Discovery Commercials equipped as mobile workshops. The Series II earned the praise of the motoring press and the continued loyalty of the army of die-hard fans which the first Discovery had won. Spy photographs of the third-generation Discovery, codenamed the L319, started to appear in 2003 as 75 prototypes completed a gruelling test programme around the globe, including honing their road performance at Germany's tortuous Nordschleife circuit. News that the new version was coming caused sales of the outgoing car to spike, perhaps in the belief that Land Rover wouldn't be able to improve on it, and an extra 7,000 had to be made. PHOTOGRAPHY: BRITISH MOTOR MUSEUM HERITAGE TRUST (1), GETTY IMAGES (1) EVOLVING GENERATIONS Turns out it could. The Discovery 3, revealed in New York in 2004, immediately won praise for its striking, modern exterior design by Geoff Upex, which gave the Discovery shape its first thorough reinterpretation in 15 years but kept key features like the stepped roofline and that hallmark rear end. The fresh new design of the third generation reflected engineering and technology which was totally new from its wheel up. Not a single part was carried over. The Integrated Body Frame chassis was an entirely new concept and together with the new, all-round independent double-wishbone suspension it allowed an even broader range of on-road “ Discovery 3 wasn’t a dramatic improvement for the Discovery so much as a galactic leap. The car grew to extralarge proportions but cast an even larger shadow for its breadth of ability. It instantly went to the top of the big off-roader class, being next to unstoppable in the rough, yet comfortable and relaxing on it” AUTOCAR MAGAZINE handling and unstoppable off-road progress. A much longer wheelbase allowed for an even roomier cabin, with more space in the third-row seats and a new ‘stadium seating’ concept which elevated passengers in the rear rows and gave them a clearer view of the extraordinary landscapes the new Discovery could take them into. Like the second-generation car, the fourth-generation Discovery launched in 2010 was another relatively subtle iteration of the previous car, but some can easily be identified by their body-colour wheel arches, in contrast to the Discovery 3‘s more utilitarian black plastic. The big news here was the new LR-TDV6 twin-turbo diesel engine, which significantly cut the emissions by an impressive ten per cent yet increased the torque so critical for steady, unstoppable off-road progress by an astonishing 36 per cent. It was a tribute to Land Rover's engineers and its technology, and early proof that the drive to reduce emissions need not compromise a Land Rover's abilities. Discovery 4 proved just as popular as the three generations preceding it, and on 29 February 2012 the one millionth Land Rover Discovery was driven from the production line in Solihull. The third Land Rover ‘nameplate’ had reached this milestone after just 23 years: five fewer than the original Defender. To mark the millionth moment, the “Journey of Discovery” began; a convoy of Discoverys driving from the factory in the United Kingdom, through often wild and inhospitable terrain, all the way to Beijing in China, the capital of a FREE SPIRIT Although not directly part of the Discovery family, the Land Rover Freelander brilliantly foresaw the market for premium, compact SUVs, a class of car which the new Discovery Sport now defines. Work began on the Freelander in 1993 and it was launched in 1997 with a series of engineering firsts for Land Rover which would later be adopted by its other models. It was the first Land Rover with a monocoque, independent suspension and a transverse engine, and the first to feature Land Rover‘s renowned Hill Descent Control system. Customers loved it, and it soon became Land Rover‘s fastestselling vehicle at the time, the best-selling SUV in Europe for five years and the UK’s best-selling SUV from its launch until 2005. In 2006, the Freelander 2 was revealed, which kept the original‘s innovative mechanical layout but made it a little bigger and moved it upmarket. And despite its more car-like engineering and compact dimensions with family appeal, it was still a capable Land Rover, as involvement in the Camel Trophy and the G4 Challenge proved. 57
Land Rover Magazine showcases stories from around the world that celebrate inner strength and the drive to go Above and Beyond.
In this issue, New Defender is put through its paces by two inspirational young adventurers as they prepare for an expedition to the South Pole. We also celebrate 50 years of Range Rover by taking a journey of discovery to Dubai. As well as looking back, we look to future as a group of visionaries explain the technologies that could change the future for all of us.