Land Rover announced today that at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show it will bring the Range_e, the firm’s diesel hybrid plug-in prototype. The car is based on the Range Rover Sport and uses a 3.0-litre TDV6 diesel with an eight-speed ZF automatic transmission. As expected, the car also features a plug-in parallel diesel hybrid system it offers a premium SUV that can run as a pure electric vehicle. The car has an EV range of 32 km, a top speed of around 193 km/h and an impressive range of 1112 km. The 'Range_e' is the first capable 4WD model from Land Rover to achieve 89g of CO2.
The 2011 Geneva Motor Show will also see the Range Rover Autobiography Ultimate Edition a.k.a. the most luxurious Range Rover ever, featuring hand crafted soft feel leathers, a yacht inspired teak floor and rear cabin iPads as standard.
Moreover, Land Rover will also bring the 2011 Discovery 4 Limited Editions with Black and White theme which will bring a fresh, more contemporary sense of design to the latest Discovery 4 line-up. The latest addition to Land Rover’s Geneva booth will be the Evoque, and the company said that it will announce full European pricing and will show a range of exciting options available.
Much like the Range Rover Sport, the Land Rover Range_e has a mechanical locking center differential, front and rear differentials, and transmission with low and high range. This is because the Range_e has been engineered to have the same full four-wheel drive capability as the Range Rover Sport.
Depending on what is required by the driver, the intelligent system equipped in the vehicle can determine what the best method is in order to provide the needed power, whether it’s diesel, electric, or both. When applying the brakes, energy is often wasted through heat and this is why the Range_e also has regenerative braking in order to recapture that energy. Once collected, the energy can then be used to drive the vehicle and thus lower consumption of fossil fuel.
According to Land Rover Global Brand Director John Edwards, this system is a good example of a premium plug-in hybrid that manages to deliver the 4WD capability that customers want from a Land Rover. The system is an evolution of the brand’s production objective of a diesel-electric hybrid technology, he added.
This technology, he continued, will be part of the brand’s next generation SUVs and will be available to customers within two years. The Technology Strategy Board of the U.K. Government currently supports different Land Rover-related projects with the Range_e being one of them.
At present, there are five prototype models that are part of the test program of the Coventry and Birmingham Low Emissions Demonstrators (CABLED) group. The brand hopes that its plug-in hybrid technology will enter the market in the near future, especially after its first diesel-electric hybrid models debuted in 2013.
Chief Engineer Hybrids Pete Richings shared that the Range_e fleet trial began last December 2010 and a total of 12,000 miles have been covered between the brand’s five test vehicles. The brand continues to gather important real world data that will allow it to refine the technology prior to introducing a production version, Richings revealed.
The brand also disclosed that it recognizes the importance of working on the different factors that affect its CO2 footprint like improving the efficiency of the powertrain, lowering the mechanical losses, and reducing its weight. This hybrid technology is just one part of its research and development.
Jaguar Land Rover has in fact agreed to spend as much as £800 million on environment-related technologies with the goal of lowering its fleet average CO2 emissions by 25% from 2008 to 2012.