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Look back at the birth of the original Land Rover | How Land Rover has driven adventure and scientific exploration | GQ Editor Dylan Jones talks 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

XXXXXXX LEFT 1997 | Hill

XXXXXXX LEFT 1997 | Hill Descent Control debuts on the new Freelander 1998 | Second-generation Discovery launches at the Paris Motor Show 2001 | Freelander on sale in the USA, Japan and Middle East | Oct: the three 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 Discovery vehicles were part of the 2003 and 2006 Land Rover G4 Challenges, an achievement celebrated with Tangier Orange special edition models European models shown. 01 03 PHOTOGRAPHY: XXXXXXXXX XXXXXXX XXXXXXXXX 54 04

AGE OF DISCOVERY 2003 | First G4 Challenge uses Discovery V8s | ‘G4’ special edition offered in Tangiers Orange 2004 | Terrain Response® launched on the third generation model introduced a series of new electronic driver aids to its dynamics, the most notable being the Active Cornering Enhancement (ACE) system, which endowed this tall off-roader with car-like agility. Its off-road ability was further improved too, with technology such as Hill Descent Control (HDC ® ). This was proven by the V8-powered Discovery vehicles 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 that 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 grueling test program 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 vehicle 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 latest design, revealed in New York in 2004, immediately won praise for its striking, modern exterior design by Geoff Upex, which gave the 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 that were 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 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 model could take them into. Like the second-generation vehicle, the fourth-generation Discovery model launched in 2010 was another relatively subtle iteration of the previous vehicle, but some can easily be identified by their body-color wheel arches. The fourth-generation model proved just as popular as the three generations preceding it, and on February 29, 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 Discovery vehicles 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 country relatively new to mass car ownership but which has adopted Land Rover vehicles with huge enthusiasm. The expedition raised, appropriately, .4 million for the Red Cross. SPORTING A NEW LOOK Two years later, a concept car appeared that hinted that the next million milestone might be reached rather sooner. The Discovery Vision concept, created under Land Rover‘s Chief Design Officer Gerry McGovern, was as significant for Discovery as the Range Stormer concept was for Range Rover FREE SPIRIT Although not directly part of the 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. 55


Land Rover

Land Rover Magazine 39


Land Rover Magazine showcases stories from around the world that celebrate inner strength and the drive to go above and beyond

Land Rover stands for not only the most capable premium vehicles, but a state of mind where a sense of curiosity, exploration and wonder informs all of life’s adventures. Encounter this throughout the latest issue of Land Rover Magazine, from meeting a herd of Ice Age survivors on the Dutch coast with the Land Rover Discovery, to the most innovative sustainable architecture on a Californian journey with the Range Rover Evoque

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