Land Rover Cars

Land Rover has a long and colorful history since its inception in 1947, and is the second oldest four-wheel drive brand behind Jeep. After World War II, Rover developed the Land Rover Series to replace the dwindling sales of its luxury cars, which were no longer in demand.

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Land Rover Origins

The first Land Rovers were developed as agricultural and utility vehicles based on the American Jeeps used during WW II. These first vehicles were very basic inside since it was used for farming and light industrial work. Meanwhile, Rover planned to produce them for only a few years to increase cash flow.

Rover realized the public may need the abilities of the Land Rover with a comfortable interior. Soon after, the company developed vehicles with four doors instead of two and seating for passengers in the rear. Driving quality improved because of the newly-added leather seats, heater, and interior trim.

Land Rover Through The Years

Throughout its history, Land Rover acquired many owners. In the late 1960s, Rover was attained by the Leyland Motor Corporation and became part of British Leyland in 1968. When British Leyland broke up in the 1980s, Rover and Land Rover was sold to the British Aerospace in 1988. Then BMW acquired both vehicles in 1994, but in 2000 sold Land Rover to Ford. Land Rover is now owned by Tata Motors.

From 1947 to 1985, Rover Company developed the Land Rover vehicles and produced several different models called Series I, II, and III. The British Army, Royal Air Force and Royal Navy all have fleets of Land Rovers in varying numbers. The Series models evolved into the current line of Land Rovers, which are the Defender, Freelander, Discovery, Range Rover, Range Rover Sport, and Range Rover Evoque. In America, the Freelander 2 is called the Land Rover LR2 and the Discovery 4 is called the Land Rover LR4.

The Defender series was launched in the U.S. in 1993, making it the first time since 1974 that Land Rover had sold a utility vehicle in America. These Land Rovers had to be modified to meet the stringent regulations of the United States Department of Transportation. The U.S. Defender series was in production until 1998 when regulations regarding air bags halted production, and adding air bags would require a major modification. Only small numbers of these vehicles had been sold, so it was determined the alteration was not economically viable. Consequently, the Defender is no longer sold in America.

Land Rover Models

In the late 1980s, Land Rover began research into Freelander so it could enter the compact sport utility vehicle (SUV) market. In 1997, the first Freelanders were produced as a luxury four-wheel drive vehicle. The Freelander was in production until 2006, with the last models sold in America being the 2005 models. In 2006, the Freelander 2, or the LR2 in the U.S., was launched. This is the current model still in production. It differed from the initial Freelander in that it has a higher ground clearance, so it is better able to handle offroad conditions. It also has a higher quality interior and more safety features than the previous version.

There have been four models of the Land Rover Discovery, with the current model being the Discovery 3 or the LR4 in America. The Discovery series was in production since 1989, and the current model was produced in 2004. In 2008, the LR3 was renamed to the LR4, while it remained the Discovery 3 elsewhere. The Discovery series allowed Land Rover to enter the midsize SUV market and provide a vehicle with four-wheel drive and offroad capabilities.

Range Rovers are large SUVs in production since 2002. It launched when Land Rover was owned by BMW to provide an offroad luxury four-wheel drive SUV. Unlike other models, the Range Rover only came with a six-speed automatic transmission. The Range Rover Sport is a luxury SUV targeted to the midsize SUV market. Finally, the Evoque is the latest model to enter the compact SUV market in 2011. It was designed for city dwellers to meet increased emissions and fuel economy requirements.

The current concept vehicles from Land Rover are the DC100 and the DC100 Sport. The car is being developed as a replacement for the Defender Series in the North American market. These are rugged vehicles that have taken design cues from the original Defender vehicles and were modernized for standards and aesthetics.

Select a Land Rover Model

Land Rover Defender

1997, 1995 | SUV, Utility/Offroad

Nothing says off-road vehicle quite like the military-style Land Rover Defender.

Land Rover Discovery

2019, 2017, 2004-2003, 1998-1995 | SUV, Utility/Offroad

The Land Rover Discovery was a bit of a detour from the Defender models.

Land Rover Discovery Series II

2002-1999 | SUV, Utility/Offroad

Designated as the first of the Land Rover Discovery Series introduced in 1994, the Discovery Series II boasted many accomplishments for a Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV) of its time.

Land Rover Discovery Sport

2017-2015 | SUV, Utility/Offroad

Land Rover Freelander

2005-2002 | SUV, Utility/Offroad

The Land Rover Freelander made its debut in the late 1990s, shortly after the company was purchased by BMW.

Land Rover LR2

2015-2008 | SUV, Utility/Offroad

As Land Rover continued to adapt with the changing times and demands of its consumers, the LR2 was introduced to fill a void in the small crossover SUV division.

Land Rover LR3

2009-2005 | SUV, Utility/Offroad

One of the many vehicles in Land Rover’s history includes the well-received LR3.

Land Rover LR4

2016-2010 | SUV, Utility/Offroad

The Land Rover has only recently made a splash in the United States, mainly due to the Range Rover line, as well as the Discovery.

Land Rover Range Rover

2019, 2017-1995 | Hybrid, SUV, Utility/Offroad

The Range Rover is a long running luxury vehicle for the Land Rover company.

Land Rover Range Rover Evoque

2019, 2017-2012 | Convertible, SUV, Utility/Offroad

Like the original Range Rover, the Land Rover Range Rover Evoque is a luxury off-road vehicle.

Land Rover Range Rover Sport

2019, 2017-2006 | Hybrid, SUV, Utility/Offroad

Inspired by the Range Rover, the Land Rover Range Rover Sport was created with off-road performance in mind.

Land Rover Range Rover Velar

2019-2018 | SUV, Utility/Offroad