Range Rover SVO Wastes No Time, Announces Bentley Bentayga Rival for 2016

Range Rover SVAutobiography 1 photo
Photo: Jaguar Land Rover
This was coming for a while now. Jaguar Land Rover was getting used with the rarefied air up there at the summit of luxurious SUVs, but the arrival of the new Bentley Bentayga give it some fumes to worry about.
The Range Rover SVAutobiography long wheelbase is currently the most expensive Jaguar Land Rover SUV money can buy, and at £164,600 (about $250,000 or €225,000), not a lot of people would call it "cheap". Or affordable. Or even reasonable.

However, SVO's managing director John Edwards says the new model could go well above that price, even quoting the £200,000 mark ($305,000 or €273,000). And when we say "quoting", we mean "going over it".

Talking to British media outlet Autoexpress, Mr. Edwards said: “I’ve never been worried about the Bentley threat – I have always thought it brings an opportunity to grow the segment.

Well, there's a classic PR comment if there ever was one. Not only does the Bentley Bentayga (and the future Rolls-Royce Cullinan) crowd the ultra-luxury SUV segment, but it also forces Jaguar Land Rover to play catch-up now.

However, Mr. Edwards continues: “It recognizes we have created a segment and it is flattery that Bentley and Rolls-Royce soon want to join in."

That part is true, but they don't just want to join in, they want to top it. As things are standing right now, the most expensive Range Rover is only about £4,000 ($6,000 or €5,400) more expensive than the base Bentayga, that's before you start adding all the extras (including a $200,000 Breitling watch).

Jaguar Land Rover is facing another problem. While the SVO models have interiors that can compete with Bentayga's in terms of quality and design, the outside of the car still looks pretty much like a sub-£100,000 car. Having a range that spans so widely in terms of prices can be both beneficial and troublesome. Paying £200,000 ($305,000 or €273,000) on a car that looks just like one that costs £75,000 ($115,000 or €100,000) can be enough to put off some of the wealthy potential clients.

Mr Edwards only sees one side of the coin, apparently: “The strength of the Range Rover is that you can still get a £75,000 entry car, and I don’t think we want to leave that behind.

Rest assured, then, it's just the SVO cars that are going after the Bentley Bentayga, the rest of the Range Rover lineup will remain just as "conveniently priced" as before.
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About the author: Vlad Mitrache
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"Boy meets car, boy loves car, boy gets journalism degree and starts job writing and editing at a car magazine" - 5/5. (Vlad Mitrache if he was a movie)
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