”The Range Rover is the most difficult vehicle for us to redesign,” says Jaguar and Land Rover head of design Massimo Frascella. “You can’t change it too much because you lose the essence of it, but you have to change enough to signify a progression in, in the evolution of the car. There’s always a really fine line and this 5th generation was no exception.”
The progression on the 5th gen Range Rover came from a subtle art of reduction, Frascella explains. Whatever the team could remove in terms of embellishment, they did. It is a masterclass in restraint with the three defining lines of the Range Rover: roofline, waistline and sill softly tapering to a point at the rear of the vehicle.
“The attitude comes from the gentle drop on the roof and the gentle rising from the sill. When you combine these elements that is the gesture of the Range Rover. We removed every single line that doesn’t need to be on the car.”
A large part of the design work was carried out in clay. ”It could not have happened any other way,” says Frascella. “The upper corner of the rear fender where you have the shoulder, the rear surface and the D-pillar, which is now a piece of glass, come together and it is hard to define that corner. It has a balance of millimetres. It is hard to imagine developing that purely digitally. We spent hours and hours with the clay to get those elements coming together at that very point.”
You can read the full write-up of the Range Rover and many more standout cars from the last 18 months by ordering Car Design Review 9 here.