In Hulu’s new science-fiction drama series, “The First,” a group of astronauts in the 2030s are striving to be the first humans to set foot on Mars. Directed by Sean Penn and produced by “House of Cards” creator Beau Willimon, Land Rover is a partner in the show, and they created a customized Range Rover Sport as a prop that interprets what the vehicle may look like in a little over a decade.
The Range Rover Sport is driven by Laz Ingram, a “visionary aerospace magnate” portrayed by Natascha McElhone. It’s clearly based on the current vehicle, but it’s been modified slightly. The vehicle is fully autonomous, and several design tweaks reflect that. A black beltline around the vehicle blends into slim taillights and headlights and acts as a “Smart Light Bar,” a 360-degree sensor and communications antenna that assists the vehicle’s navigating capabilities. The steering wheel retracts into the dashboard for comfort when a human is not driving. The iconic Range Rover floating roof rests on a large slab of wraparound privacy glass, which can change from mirrored to transparent almost instantly. There’s even “an intelligent interior that can change shape, density, and form to act as a passive safety system,” in case you wanted a Range Rover that is also a TARDIS.
Even with all of these changes, the vehicle is instantly recognizable as a Range Rover, thanks to cues such as the floating roof and castellated clamshell bonnet that have been hallmarks of the design since 1969.
Considering that this prop vehicle was actually designed by Land Rover, and considering 2030 is less than twelve years away, perhaps some hints to the future generations of Range Rovers are here. The full-size Range Rover and Range Rover Sport should enter their next generations in the early 2020s, and may well still be in production in 2030.
Check out the trailer for "The First" on YouTube below.
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