The newest Range Rover model gets its name Velar from that given to prototypes of the original model. Even though the first Velar-badged pre-production Range Rover didn’t hit the road until 1969, development of that iconic vehicle began in earnest in 1967.
Five decades later and with an all-new Range Rover to promote, Land Rover has set up a public exhibit at the Solihull plant that tells the story of the first Range Rover’s development and it subsequent history leading to the all-new Velar. Created with the help of Roger Crathorne, “Mr. Land Rover” himself, the exhibition offers a visual history of the world’s most iconic luxury SUV, from the single model offering to the expansion of the range with the Sport, Evoque and now the Velar.
The display space includes a fully restored early Range Rover two-door model, as well as the original rolling test chassis – absent any bodywork – that was used to demonstrate to company executives the superior ride control afforded the vehicle thanks to its use of coil springs at each corner. Part of the space is also dedicated to special merchandise created to celebrate half a century of Range Rover development.
The Range Rover Story is part of the Solihull plant tour available to the public with prior arrangements, starting at around $60 per person. More information can be found at the Land Rover Experience UK website.