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Onelife 25

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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


SPECIAL VEHICLES The SVO team has built many vehicles for movies, not least the series of James Bond movies, most recently Spectre Edwards cites the new long-wheelbase Range Rover SVAutobiography. “A lot of money is spent on the interior and the vast majority of that is focused on the second row. We talk about first-class travel and in many ways this effectively makes it the best chauffeur car you can get because of the physics and geometry of the vehicle. The enhanced seats and deployable tables are all about comfort, luxury and refinement.” SVO’s highlights so far are numerous, but include the bona fide sub-brand’s best-seller, the Range Rover Sport SVR, first introduced in the summer of 2014. “It’s an outstanding car that makes you smile every time you drive it,” says Edwards. The work Special Vehicle Operations has undertaken for the James Bond franchise is another high point, in particular for the recent movie Spectre. “We spent a lot of time finding out what the movie’s stunt drivers needed. What sets our employees apart is that they dream about cars and have a ‘can-do’ attitude. They understand the brief and do whatever they can to respond to it, however crazy it might seem. We ended up providing the film with several ‘Bigfoot’ Defender vehicles, the Range Rover Sport SVR and the Jaguar C-X75 as well. Developing these vehicles is The highly luxurious and capable Range Rover Sentinel * boasts the highest levels of protection a Land Rover SUV can offer, including bullet proof glass and more *The Range Rover Sentinel vehicle shown here is not available in the United States. 84

always fun and attracts an awful “OUR EMPLOYEES lot of attention to our brands.” Back to the real world, UNDERSTAND THE Special Vehicle Operations BRIEF AND DO plays an important personal security role, too. The division WHATEVER THEY CAN continues to create ultra-secure TO RESPOND TO IT, vehicles, such as the impressive Range Rover Sentinel * , a heavily HOWEVER CRAZY IT armored circa four-ton SUV that’s still exceptionally capable. MIGHT SEEM” “The great thing about the Range Rover Sentinel * JOHN EDWARDS, is that not only will it protect you if you get into trouble, but it will also allow you to get out of trouble too through its drivability,” says Edwards. “Some customers have some great stories on how effective it has been for them, but for obvious reasons we can’t share them or talk about those customers I’m afraid!” The team has also recently built a specially adapted Land Rover Discovery for disaster relief, currently being trialed by the Austrian Red Cross. Among its many ingenious features, the ‘Project Hero’ concept features a roof-mounted drone that can take off and land on the vehicle in motion, allowing rescuers to reach more remote areas, capture photos and even record audio messages to send back. “It literally becomes the eyes and ears of the advance party,” adds Edwards. The relationship building that went into the secret pre-launch reveal of the Range Rover SV Coupe to select customers – before any journalists or retailers – is an MANAGING DIRECTOR OF JAGUAR LAND ROVER SPECIAL VEHICLE OPERATIONS John Edwards, Managing Director of Jaguar Land Rover Special Vehicle Operations additional stand-out moment for Edwards, and something he wants to nurture in the future. “We described it to our retailers without showing it and asked them to pick one customer each. After signing a non-disclosure agreement, the customers were invited via a discreet rear entrance of a prestigious London hotel to see the car. They loved being on the inside track. They’re discerning and demanding, but if you build a strong relationship they keep coming back. We strive to ensure that relationship with our customers is special, as we’re building very special products.” There’s that word ‘special’ again. Maybe there’s something in it? FIND OUT MORE Discover more at 85

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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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