Four years ago, Jaguar Land Rover launched a new business that aimed to turn up the volume on its core SUVs and sports cars and amp up the luxury, capability, and performance in the vehicles.
On Tuesday, the automaker showcased three vehicles in its newish “special vehicle operations” business that push the boundaries of luxury, off-road capabilities, and performance. They included a refresh of its flagship, the 2018 Range Rover SVAutobiography. The automaker also showed off the Land Rover Discovery SVX, which won’t be available until summer 2018, and the 2018 Range Rover Sport SVR.
The Range Rover SVAutobiography has a 557-horsepower 5.0-liter V8 engine and an eight-speed automatic transmission, and comes in long and standard wheelbase variants. It’s the long-wheelbase version that is targeted to the kind of customers who will most likely be chauffeured, and so has all the luxury appointments you might expect from a vehicle that starts at $207,900.
“SVAutobiography is all about pushing the luxury boundary,” John Edwards, director of Jaguar Land Rover Special Operations told Fortune.
For instance, the it includes a refrigerated compartment in the back that can hold four 20-ounce bottles or two 750-mL bottles and two glasses. The long wheelbase-version has executive rear seats that can recline to 40 degrees (among a total of 22 possible adjustments) and includes a hot-stone massage function, and heated calf and foot rests.
Other features include a center console that extends the full length of the rear cabin, tables that can be deployed with a touch of a button, two 10-inch integrated rear entertainment screens, and 4G WiFi connectivity.
Tuesday’s reveal provides a progress report of sorts for a very new and niche business that is trying to compete with the performance divisions of other luxury automakers like Mercedes-Benz’s AMG line.
“If you look at what our competitors do, and if you look at the aftermarket, consumers always want more, that little bit extra,” Edwards said. And JLR is betting that there is demand for specialty versions of its Range Rover, Land Rover, and Jaguar vehicles.
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The business unit is still small at about 5,000 annual sales this year. But Edwards says the company is poised to “significantly grow” that number based on the launch of these latest vehicles as well as other yet-to-be announced products that are in the pipeline.