The Range Rover SVAutobiography, the most expensive Range Rover model ever made, has been revealed at the New York motor show.
Due to go on sale in the UK this summer, the super-luxury Range Rover costs £148,900, and is billed as “the most luxurious and powerful series production Range Rover” in the model’s 45-year history. The car replaces the current Autobiography Black trim level, which appeared on Range Rover models in 2013.
Forming part of the MY16 Range Rover line-up, the SVAutobiography will be available in both standard- and long-wheelbase forms.
Upgrades include new two-tone paintwork, which combines the black upper body with one of nine colour choices, as well as bespoke badging at the rear and new lettering on the bonnet. The SVAutobiography also gets a unique front grille, finished in chrome.
Inside, many of the control surfaces are machined from aluminium, while new trim features on the centre console and armrests. The rear seats now come with powered deployable tables, and passengers can access a chiller compartment. Aluminium coat hooks also feature, along with more luxurious carpets.
Other modifications include the fitting of two extra seats which slot into place on the car’s tailgate. Dubbed ‘Event Seating’, the seats are finished in Windsor leather. The boot area also features a sliding floor for the first time, which Land Rover says will “optimise practicality and ease of use for loading and unloading.”
Engine options include the same 542bhp 5.0-litre supercharged V8 which appears in the Range Rover Sport SVR, although Land Rover says it has retuned the unit for comfort and refinement rather than outright performance. Other powertrain options include the SDV8 and SDV6 Hybrid options, which already feature on the Range Rover.
Top-spec V8 versions of the SVAutobiography also get quad exhaust tips at the rear. It sits on 22in alloy wheels, which are described by Land Rover as being “very expensive” and having “a jewel-like quality.”
Speaking ahead of the car’s unveiling, SVO boss John Edwards said the SVAutobiography “takes the Range Rover to another level of comfort, craftsmanship and refinement”.
Land Rover design director Gerry McGovern added: “With the SVAutobiography, we have taken the opportunity to optimise the Range Rover’s luxury execution and precision while delivering beautiful detailing that considerably enhances the customer’s experience of our flagship vehicle.
“Inside, it’s all about luxury,” said McGovern. “We’ve used the most expensive materials and finishes, the kind you can only get on a Range Rover. We’ve also paid far more attention to the rear. You’re in first class in the rear, not economy. There is more comfort, softer materials, more appointments. It’s an office or dining rooms on wheels.
“We’ve taken the best and made it better,” he said. “It’s very expensive.”
The launch of the Range Rover SVAutobiography means Land Rover is well placed to tackle the onslaught of super-luxury SUVs planned by Rolls-Royce, Bentley and Mercedes-Benz. Mercedes has already hinted that a luxurious Mercedes-Maybach SUV, likely to be based on the GLS, forms part of its future product plans. Bentley and Rolls-Royce, meanwhile, will have their own SUVs on sale in 2016 and 2017 respectively.
The SVAutobiography is also the first luxury vehicle to be created by the Special Operations division, with previous offerings being related more to performance. It is known that JLR eventually wants its division to cover three areas: performance, luxury and all-terrain vehicles.
“You hear ‘icon’ used a lot and it’s ridiculous – you have to earn your mettle, creating values you execute consistently,” said McGovern. “Range Rover has now reached a point after 45 years where it can be called an icon. It’s peerless, and there’s nothing else like it.”