Range Rover's 2013 flagship slims down to drive fuel economy
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The redesigned 2013 Range Rover SUV goes on sale in the U.S. market in December featuring a sharply lighter body, improved fuel economy and better handling.
The five-seat Range Rover has an all-aluminum unibody structure -- a first for an SUV, Land Rover said.
The body is 39 percent lighter than the steel-bodied 2012 Range Rover. Land Rover said the U.S.-specific model with a 5.0-liter V-8 engine is 700 pounds lighter than the current model. Range Rover said performance and fuel economy will improve but did not provide more specific information.
Pricing will be disclosed next month.
Styling hasn't radically changed except for the sleeker lines and headlights that are similar to those on the new Range Rover Evoque compact SUV. The tailgate design has also been modified.
"The new Range Rover preserves the essential, unique character of the vehicle -- that special blend of luxury, performance and unmatched all-terrain capability," said John Edwards, Land Rover's global brand director. "However, its clean sheet design and revolutionary lightweight construction have enabled us to transform the experience for luxury vehicle customers, with a step change in comfort, refinement and handling."
Range Rover's flagship SUV is equipped with a new four-corner air suspension that improves cornering and steering feel, Land Rover said.
Land Rover won't release vehicle specifications until next month but said rear interior legroom has been increased by 4.7 inches. Rear bucket seats that transform the Range Rover into a four-seater are optional.
The 2013 Range Rover also has an adaptive dynamics suspension and a new system called Terrain Response 2 Auto that uses various sensors to determine the road surface and automatically makes adjustments to traction control, transmission, electronic differential, transfer box and air suspension.
Interior noise has been reduced by lamination of the windshield and side door glass, the company said.
The V-8 engine is carried over from the existing model but mated to a new eight-speed ZF automatic transmission.
The fourth generation Range Rover will be produced in a new aluminum production facility at Land Rover's Solihull factory in the United Kingdom.
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