THE first picture of the all-new Range Rover Velar has been released ahead of the model's world premier in London on March 1.
The Velar will be the fourth SUV in the Range Rover family, slotting in between the Evoque and Sport in the luxury line-up.
Expected to share some components with Jaguar's new F-Pace SUV, the new Velar will count its Jaguar/Land Rover stable mate as a rival, alongside the similarly-sized Porsche Macan and top-selling Audi Q5 (in higher specs) premium SUVs.
Engines, specification and prices for the sleek five-door Velar haven't been released as yet, but on the cost front we can assume it will land about mid-way between the $56,050 Evoque and $90,900 Range Rover Sport.
That means around $75k, mirroring the RRP of the Jag F-Pace (from $74,340) and the soon-to-arrive cheaper Porsche Macan (from $76,610).
The Velar name has been taken from the original Range Rover prototypes of 1969, and Land Rover chief design officer, Gerry McGovern, said: "We call the Velar the avant-garde Range Rover. It brings a new dimension of glamour, modernity and elegance to the brand. The Range Rover Velar changes everything."
A promise that the Velar will be "refined for every occasion, for every terrain" suggests it will remain a true Range Rover in off-road ability, while also offering "pioneering consumer technology".
Introducing a fourth Range Rover model is a shrewd move in this era of insatiable appetites for anything SUV, plus ever-increasing sales in the premium SUV segment.
The Velar will be shown publicly at next month's Geneva Motor Show, and European sales are expected to begin in the third quarter of this year.
No news on an Australian launch as yet, but we would expect the new SUV to arrive here a few months later.
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