She’s also produced a selection of classic Land Rover Christmas cards. Again, exclusive to Louise, cards are £6 for five or £11 for 10 including UK post and packing. For overseas enquiries please email [email protected] for details. You can buy online at www.louiselimb.com or, if you prefer to pay by cheque, either print off the form on the web site to make your selection or send a covering letter, enclosing a cheque for the relevant amount, made payable to A L Limb and post to Louise Limb Art and Illustration, PO Box 491, Silsden, West Yorkshire, BD21 9AE.
NOW HERE’S A great idea if you are stuck for ideas for Christmas gifts? ukLANDROVERevents has gift vouchers for three different driving experiences. Off Road Tuition at Robin Hood’s Bay in North Yorkshire (£175), 4×4 Experience Days touring the North York Moors (£175), and guided Green Lane Tours in your own Land Rover (£50). Call Colin at ukLANDROVERevents on 07787 555060 or order from the website: www.ukLANDROVERevents.com/gvouchers. Sounds great to us – worth putting on your Christmas list!
THE LAND ROVER SERIES 1, built for Winston Churchill’s 80th birthday, has been sold at auction for a stunning £129,000. It seems the vehicle had been sitting in a shed in Kent since 1977 and was expected to fetch around £60,000, but one – anonymous – bidder was prepared to pay more than double! The 1954 Series 1 was sold with only 12,932 miles on the clock and with the original logbook, registered as UKE 80, in the name of “Rt Hon Sir Winston Spencer Churchill KG. OM. CH. MP. Chartwell, Westerham, Kent”. It had been modified for Churchill with an extra wide passenger seat and a heated footwell to keep the country’s most famous ex-Prime Minister warm as he was chauffer-driven around his Chartwell Estate. Here’s hoping that, while the owner obviously wishes to remain anonymous, the vehicle still manages to make it to a few shows over the coming years as there are a great many enthusiasts that would love to be able to see the vehicle up close.
WHILE THE AWESOME Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT 6.4-litre V8-engine model is available in the UK under special order, it is obviously only ever going to be of limited sales success; due to the price and thirsty engine. A more down-to-earth ‘performance’ Jeep is now available, however, with the ‘Sports Line’ version, the S-Limited. Carbon-fibre trim adorns the interior, together with ventilated sports-styled Nappa leather seats, with bright racing styed pedals. The S-Limited has the standard Grand Cherokee features of Quadra-Lift air suspension, Quadra-Trac II four-wheel drive, with external tweaks including black grille and tail light bar, and black gloss 20-inch alloy wheels. The model comes with the 3-litre V6 CRD diesel engine and has an on-the-road price tag of £44,595. Adding these extra sporting touches are aimed at introducing the Grand Cherokee to a whole new group of customers. In our view, you don’t need the flash bits, if you are interested, go and take a test drive – you won’t be disappointed.
WHEN WE tested VW’s excellent new pick-up, the Amarok, we had one particular criticism – that there wasn’t an automatic gearbox option. It seems that VW felt the same as news arrived as we closed for press of a new eight-speed automatic version. The new Highline model with BlueMotion Technology and permanent 4MOTION is now available at £25,105 (plus VAT), putting it firmly head-to-head with Ford’s automatic version of the Ranger. Besides the new auto gearbox, the Amarok gets a welcome power boost to its 2.0-litre BiTDI engine, up from 160bhp to 178bhp. More significantly, this all means the maximum towing ability is increased from 2800kg to 3000kg for the manual and 3200kg for the automatic; once again, matching what Ford has on offer with the Ranger. The new engine tweaks see CO2 figures dropping 10 g/km, to 199 g/km. Our final criticism of the Amarok was availability… production for the UK has now started at the Hanover plant, and VW believes this will much improve supply. Demand will also increase, that’s for sure!
The original Range Rover was to originally have its launch in Morocco but it was scuppered due to some ‘logistical issues’. Fast-forward 42 years and the all-new model has arrived in Africa for a recreation of that original unveiling. Is the new L405 model good enough to live up to its iconic forebears?
Words: Phil Weeden | Photos: Phil Weeden and Land Rover
The new Range Rover is the most capable Land Rover yet,” so says the literature released from the Solihull SUV maker. Quite a lofty claim, but then confidence in the marque is high right now. The Discovery 4 is one the most accomplished 4x4s in the world; the Freelander 2 is an established all-rounder and recently refreshed for 2013; the Evoque has become the best-selling LR model to date with 85 per cent of its sales coming from conquest customers; while the outgoing Range Rover has consistently sold well, with a peak of 32,000 units in 2010, thereby cementing its reputation as one of the world’s best luxury SUVs. And therein lay the dilemma: how do you replace a car like the Range Rover, which has sold consistently well in its 11-year reign and ultimately has no real direct competitors? The engineers in charge of plotting Range Rover’s future were very clear, following feedback from focus groups, which said: ‘Don’t change it, just make it better’…
This is a unique off-road event, where teams from the public match up against the best from the Armed Forces. And it’s not all extreme off-roading either, this can be a family event too – provided you can read a real map!
Words and photography: Alan Coutts
Mudmaster delivered the kind of experiences that crews won’t stop talking about for weeks. It’s an MSA-approved navigational trial event, appealing to a wide cross section of 4×4 users, from out and out road legal challenge vehicles to family weekend offroaders, plus, of course, teams from the UK Armed Forces. Held at sites across Central Scotland with the aim, according to the organisers, of “improving road safety, developing both on and off-road driving and map reading skills”. In reality, it was much more exciting than that.
Chief Creative Director, Gerry McGovern, doesn’t mince his words. He’s very vocal about the failings of the P38a Range Rover, dismissing it as ‘not iconic enough’ to live up to the brand. He’s also stood up to some of the criticism levelled at the recent DC100 concepts that took the world by storm last year. He confirmed at the Range Rover launch that the Defender replacement, expected to be unveiled in 2015, would not look anything like the DC100 concepts. However, he also stated that any new Defender will not look like the old one either. He did say, though, that it would be as ‘hard as nails and true to integrity of the brand.’
Winter 2012 Issue of 4×4 Magazine
This is probably the most important issue of the year for us, when we get together a fantastic selection of 4x4s from the ‘softest’ SUV to the gnarliest Hardcore off-roader for our 4×4 Of The Year. This is an event that I am personally proud to claim started back in March 1986 with a mere four vehicles, all tested in Norfolk and photographed on the beach near my parents’ pub – where myself and the photographer stayed to save on expenses! Some things change and some things stay the same.
This year we had 24 vehicles, plus seven pick-ups (tested next month) adding up to a retail value in excess of £1m. Now that’s quite a responsibility and our test team remains small and perfectly formed, and it’s a personal big thanks to Hils Everitt, Sue Loy, Bob Cooke and LRE chief instructor and ace snapper Wayne Mitchelson for the testing duties. Sitting discussing the vehicles one evening during the test week, we established we had no less than 151 years of off-road driving experience between us. For a couple of members of the team, that was a salutary discovery! Hopefully we have managed to pass on that diverse and extensive knowledge in an entertaining manner in this year’s feature starting on page 26.