His Roadster and Model S models have spurred better-established rivals into a greater spend on electric vehicles, with Porsche the most recently reported brand to be considering a player in the all-electric arena.
Now, Land Rover is believed to be considering an assault on the coming Tesla Model X SUV with a standalone new Range Rover EV model.
The company already offers hybrid versions of the new Range Rover twins - new ground for the British carmaker - but according to the UK’s Autocar, Land Rover isn’t stopping there.
That’s something that even Land Rover design boss Gerry McGovern has touched on in the past, speaking of new “incredibly luxurious, low-slung” models.
Autocar reports that not only is Land Rover seriously considering such a model, but that it is exploring the potential for a range that includes conventional petrol and diesel models, along with an all-electric version.
The report adds that the new model’s platform would be based on, but not identical to, the aluminium monocoque architecture that underpins the current Range Rover line-up.
Tweaks to the design would of course include accommodation for a large battery pack that wouldn’t impose on storage space.
As for the ‘car-like’ design, it appears we can expect a sleeker, more aerodynamic and low-set design that would allow the new model to better compete with the 425km driving range of Tesla’s Model S.
The cost of developing and building this new Range Rover would likely be offset by Jaguar’s coming SUV, which would likewise be more of a soft-roader SUV than a capable off-roading machine.
Whether this report should be taken with more than a grain of salt is hard to say, but with Tesla’s fortunes increasing and (SUV-adoring) markets like China expected to embrace all-electric offerings in the future, it would not be the worst move the brand could make.
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