The Range Rover has been the flagship machine for the Land Rover family for decades now. You know it as a wealthy suburbanite mall cruiser but it’s actually a wonderfully luxurious and extremely capable four-wheel-drive beast. The history of the Range Rover runs all the way back to 1970, and if you’d like to learn about how the model has evolved over that time then you’re in luck.
In the late 1960s, the first Range Rover prototypes were created. These vehicles were disguised by using a badge name called Velar. This was taken from the Italian term “velare,” which means to veil. So these were veiled prototypes hiding a bit of what was to come. The first 26 prototypes built wore this Velar badging before the Range Rover name was applied.
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After that, the Range Rover was brought to the world as a 1970 model. How long did the first generation last? All the way up through 1996. Initially, Land Rover offered just a two-door body style for the Range Rover, but it eventually added a four-door version in 1981. Production on the second generation began and it was introduced as a 1995 model before bowing out in 2002.
The more familiar and far more upscale style we know today kicked off with the L322 third-generation Range Rover. These were built between 2002 and 2012, and they were fitted with powerful engines and nicer interior spaces. We’re now into the fourth generation Range Rover, which is an evolution of the one that first went on sale as a 2013 model. It has continued on with more refinement and upgrades along the way.
Today, there’s the upper-crust approved SVAutobiography, which makes Bentley owners think twice about which vehicle they feel like taking out that day. On the other end, you have newly announced SVAutobiography Dynamic, which makes use of a 550-horsepower supercharged V-8 engine. These are still mighty machines that can tackle just about anything in their way. They also happen to be gorgeous luxury rides inside and out that have come a long way from being considered simple bits of farm equipment.