Land Rover unveils smaller, greener off-roader
Land Rover has unveiled a compact 4x4 concept called the LRX, which showcases a bolder new look for Land Rover design. Land Rover says the three-door LRX offers the benefits of a 4x4 in a smaller, more agile package. Gerry McGovern, Land Rover's design director, said "LRX is a design born out of passion for the brand, but it is different, relevant, engaging and exciting - because Land Rover has never built ordinary cars...it's a Land Rover that would be comfortable on Bond Street or Fifth Avenue, but wouldn't flinch at getting its wheels dirty."
Power comes from a proposed 2.0-litre turbodiesel/electric hybrid, capable of running on bio-diesel. An integrated Electric Drive Rear Axle Drive (ERAD) would allow the LRX to use electric drive alone at lower speeds while keeping full (and possibly improved) 4x4 ability in difficult conditions. Off-road the ERAD provides extra torque when needed and maximum electrical torque from standstill, which in turn offers even more low-speed control and enhanced pull-away on slippery surfaces. On the road, the ERAD allows traffic creep up to 20mph using only electric power and when required an Integrated Starter-Generator (ISG) function re-starts the engine automatically. The electric drive then assists the mechanical engine until the engine is running at its most efficient range.
This engine could offer a potential of 120g/km CO2 emissions - revolutionary for a vehicle of this type and more like the level of CO2 emissions usually found in a supermini. By comparison, the lowest emissions from a similar car are from the Nissan Qashqai, which produces 145g/km from its 1.5 DCi engine. The LRX will be the first Land Rover model to address the issue of rising levels of CO2; lower weight and smaller frontal area help to reduce drag and further improve fuel economy and emissions.