2005 Land Rover LR3 Preview

2017
The Car Connection
2017
The Car Connection

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Ominous storm clouds hang in the sky above. But turn to the west, and a rainbow has risen off the edge of the horizon. If you don’t like the weather in northern Scotland, just wait fifteen minutes. It’s bound to change. And it seems like the same thing applies to the terrain. One minute, you’re surrounded by boggy marsh, another you’re at the top of a barren, windswept hilltop.

This is a harsh and rugged place, and certainly not your typical tourist destination. On the other hand, it’s a perfect setting for the debut of Land Rover’s new LR3, the long-awaited replacement for the British marque’s equally harsh-yet-rugged Discovery sport-utility vehicle.

At first glance, you might mistake the new ute for the top-of-the-line Range Rover, particularly the front end, with its crossbar grille and jewel-like headlamps. Such similarities are purely intentional. The design of the new LR3 is more elegant, refined and upmarket than the ungainly Disco, which was a clear case of function over form.

Where the Range Rover was the work of BMW, which briefly owned the British manufacturer, the LR3 is the product of Ford Motor Co.  Ford purchased Land Rover for $2.9 billion in March of 2000, and has invested plenty more since then in its effort to transform the long-struggling subsidiary into a profitable operation.

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