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Spyshots: Land Rover Surprises us With Odd Mule [Updated]

Spy photographers have been catching a number of Land Rover pre-production models in the last couple of months or so, with most reports about them suggesting that they are camouflaged Freelander 3 (LR2 in the United States) of the next generation variety.
Land Rover Mule 11 photos
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The following batch of spy photos depicts an entirely new Land Rover vehicle though, and as you can all see we're talking about a rather strange-looking mule that's based on the body and certain details from a Range Rover Evoque.

Although there is no other vehicle in sight to compare it with in terms of size, the prototype appears to be quite a bit larger than the Evoque, which would suggest that we're looking at a mule for the next generation of the Freelander/LR2.

However, this would put the previous pre-production model allegedly depicting the new Freelander/LR2 in a cloud of mystery, as those photos clearly show a close-production version and not a mule.

In other words, the mule in the adjacent photo gallery should have been caught testing long before the previous models, which leaves us with one remaining speculation: this is a Land Rover model that has no direct predecessor in the current lineup.

As some of you remember, Land Rover recently announced an entire family of models sporting the Discovery nameplate at the Geneva Motor Show 2014, with both the actual Discovery model and the new Freelander to be a part of it.

In an effort to make people actually see through the sea of way-too-similar-looking models, Land Rover will have three distinct lines of vehicles starting with 2015: “luxury line” - which comprises the three Range Rover models, “leisure line” - which will include the Discovery, the Freelander and the yet-unnamed model in the photos bellow and the “dual-purpose line” - which will comprise of the Defender successor and a yet-to-be-unveiled model called “Landy”.

[Update]: According to both one of our users (thanks, JoaoFF17), and the spy photographer who sent us the images, our entire speculative writing above is completely bull. The model depicted in the adjacent photos is actually a pre-production prototype mule for the upcoming 2015 Jaguar SUV - the first crossover/SUV in the company's history.

The model is set to be based on Jaguar's future iQ [Al] platform, which will be modular enough to be used on both the upcoming XE and the yet-unnamed crossover/SUV. The interesting bit is that the new architecture will feature extensive use of aluminium to keep the weight down, making for the first ever use of a modular aluminium space frame – at least that we know of.

Expect more details about the model in the upcoming months, as the Range Rover Evoque-based mule will eventually transform into a “regular” camouflaged pre-production prototype with more Jaguar C-X17 concept lines.


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