The days and weeks leading up to the world’s premiere automotive shows are always fun for the auto enthusiast. In addition to exciting new concept vehicle designs and waves of promotional media, new rumors and storylines begin to swirl about the future plans of some of our favorite automotive brands.
This year is no exception, with Jaguar Land Rover leaking plans to build a new, super-luxury Range Rover at the New York International Auto Show. Quickly scanning the headline, I assumed Land Rover was offering a new trim package for its lavish Range Rover Autobiography Ultimate Edition which carries a price tag of $170,000. I was wrong. Conversations between Autocar and Land Rover Brand Director John Edwards indicate Land Rover’s intent on developing an Ultra-Lux Range Rover.
“The Ultimate Edition shows there’s an opportunity to go up a notch in price. We tested the market for a reason. We always learn for future models.”
Land Rover is certainly making good on its word to expand the luxury-focused Range Rover brand. The Range Rover Evoque would represent the “entry-level” vehicle, with the Range Rover Sport as a mid-price option. The flagship Range Rover – which will debut its 4th generation remodel – is due in 2014 and figures to carry an MSRP of about $85,000. This currently leaves the Ultimate Edition at the top of the heap with its 170k price tag; for now. It is hard to believe that the whopping six-figure price tag on the Ultimate may only be good for second place in a new Range Rover hierarchy when and if an Ultra Lux Range Rover arrives.
Hard to believe, until you consider the competition Jaguar Land Rover may face in the near future. As Edwards noted, the market for high-end luxury SUVs is growing, and this growth is drawing competition. Bentley debuted its EXP 9 F concept at the Geneva Motor Show (pictured below) and rumors have been flying about Lamborghini, and Aston Martin entering the marketplace as well.
We are interested to see how Land Rover plans to top the Ultimate Edition and whether other high-end automotive brands can create an SUV without compromising their brand integrity.
Bentley EXP 9 F Concept
Aston Martin Lagonda Concept
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