Jaguar Land Rover is betting on its Range Rover Velar becoming a design classic, launching it today with the Design Museum playing host to the new SUV in its first car exhibit.
Velar is a name from Range Rover’s archives: the name was originally a fictional one that adorned prototypes of the original 1970 Range Rover. JLR has dusted the name off and applied to the fourth member of the Range Rover range, slotting in between the Evoque and Sport, with a wheelbase of 2,874 mm.
The Range Rover Velar (called Blade during development) is a sleeker, more avant-garde model, with the idea of simplicity driving each stage of its development. The drag coefficient is a low 0,32, a figure seldom seen in this class.
The interior is an exercise in simplicity and calmness, with a sustainable seat material developed with Kvadrat, in place of leather. The Touch Pro Duo infotainment system, with two 10-inch high-definition touch screens, is said to be state of the art, with controls not appearing till they are lit up. The exterior features clean surfaces, slim LED headlights, flush door handles and a sleek tailgate. The Velar’s 22-inch wheels give it a show-car presence, but they help to give it Land Rover’s all-terrain capability, something Range Rover customers expect. A locking rear differential is optional. It will also have outstanding ride, says JLR, with standard air suspension on six-cylinder models, and Adaptive Dynamics for all models. The Velar uses plenty of aluminium in its structure, contributing to its lightness.
The launch at the Design Museum, which drew guests including Poppy Delevingne, Damien Lewis, Rob Brydon, Jimmy Carr, Kostja Ullmann, and Rag â€™nâ€™ Bone Man, saw a capacity audience, who checked out both the new car and a photo exhibition featuring it, shot by Gary Bryan.
There was a simultaneous unveiling at a pop-up display on Kensington High Street, West London.
JLR also announced a partnership with the Design Museum, with events over the next three years.
The Velar goes on sale in mid-July priced from Â£44,830. Engines range from a four-cylinder Ingenium diesel to a supercharged 3Â·0-litre V6 petrol engine delivering 380 PS.
Margot Robbie (Focus, The Wolf of Wall Street, Suicide Squad) has become a spokeswoman for Nissan, showing off the Japanese brand’s electric car credentials with its BladeGlider sports car around the streets of Monaco, and into Casino Square.
The Australian actress tested one of the two BladeGliders on closed roads in the principality, racing against its twin. She drifts around Fairmont Hairpin, and slid sideways around the Massenet corner.
The petite sports car has a very Japanese appearance with its origami-like folds and detail-rich surfaces, and seats three, with the driver in the central position. It’s not for saleâ€”it’s a prototype that will be unveiled at the Salon de GenÃ¨ve later this year.
It’s in direct contrast to the bulky Nissan Leaf, the world’s best selling electric vehicle.
The Renaultâ€“Nissan Alliance has invested heavily in electric cars, staking its future on the growth of the sector.
In a release, Robbie said, ‘It’s a really exciting time for electric vehicles. More people are choosing to go electric, leading the way to a more sustainable future and the Nissan BladeGlider hints at the future of smarter performance cars,â€™ said Margot Robbie.
Nissan chose Monaco as it has a sustainability programme that aims to reduce carbon emissions by up to 50 per cent by 2030. â€˜We want to inspire people to take small steps towards cleaner, safer cities, and working with Margot is the perfect way to do just that,â€™ said Gareth Dunsmore, Director of Electric Vehicles for Nissan Europe.
The advertisement forms part of a campaign, hashtagged #ElectrifytheWorld, to get people talking about sustainability and zero emissions living.â€”Nathalia Archila and Lucire staff
As expected, the Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato concept that was shown at the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este at Lake Como has become a production reality, with the company saying that it will produce 99 examples at Gaydon, Warwickshire, with deliveries commencing during the first quarter of 2017.
Aston Martin says the car is an example of its collaboration with Zagato, though its press information does not say whether the model, based on its Vanquish flagship, was styled by the Italian coachbuilder or done in-house, as it had been for the V12 Vantage Zagato in 2011.
The company notes that the new car has ‘Aston Martin’s acclaimed dynamic and material qualities with Zagato’s signature design language.’
At the launch of the concept last month, Zagato CEO Andrea Zagato noted, ‘We pride ourselves on our strong partnership and the creation of the Vanquish Zagato Concept was a true shared experience. It represents the essence of an important design relationship that dates back over fifty years,’ but there was no elaboration on where the design took place.
The first collaboration began with the Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato of 1960, and it was revived under Victor Gauntlett’s leadership of the company in the 1980s with the V8 Vantage Zagato. Neither car was considered attractive on launch, though both were perceived to be future classicsâ€”which they became. The DB4 GT Zagato is now valued at over Â£10 million and has few critics today.
Subsequent collaborations were the 2002 DB7 Vantage Zagato, which used a lightly modified version of the donor car’s front end so it did not have to be retested for safety; and the 2011 V12 Vantage Zagato.
The Vanquish Zagato has an engine uprated to 600 PS, with a claimed 0â€“60 mph time of 3Â·5 s. The company says the suspension set-up will be unique to the model. It features a unique carbonfibre body that has new round rear taillights, LED technology shared with the Aston martin Vulcan supercar, a sculpted rear end that has a profile similar to that of the DB11, with a downward contour and pronounced spoiler splitting the taillights. There is a pronounced side strake, reinterpreted so it now runs more deeply down the height of the front wing aft of the wheels, and, as expected, there is the famed Zagato double-bubble roof. The Vanquish Zagato is a liftback.
Inside, the Vanquish Zagato uses herringbone carbonfibre, and shadow and anodized bronze leather, with the option of aniline leather. The seats and doors have a Z-pattern stitch, and the Zagato Z is embossed on headrests and stitched into the centre console.
Luisa Via Roma, styled LuisaViaRoma, is a familiar sight to the fashion scene: it’s one of the biggest international concept stores in Firenze and its history goes back to 1930.
With Bugatti having extended its brand into lifestyle, using founder Ettore Bugatti’s name for its collection, Luisa Via Roma is an ideal partner for the company. The two announced their collaboration at the Bridge of Love installation on the Arno during Pitti Uomo 90 on Tuesday. The Ettore Bugatti Lifestyle Collection will be available from the Luisa Via Roma physical store in Firenze and its website. A classic Bugatti Type 51 racing car from the 1930s was there at the launch.
Luisa Via Roma will be the first place in Italy which will retail the clothing and accessories’ ranges from the collection, beginning with the autumnâ€“winter 2016â€“17 collection.
The launch of the collaboration, entitled Underwater Love, saw VIPs including Bugatti brand manager Massimiliano Ferrari, Paolo Lao, Petite Meller, Grace Chatto of Clean Bandit, Diego Rizzi, Bugatti marketing and communications’ Elke Palmaers, Bugatti creative director Daniele Andretta, Mauro Bucco, Marlen Lissek, Marco Cartasegna, Filippo Cirulli, Federico Oggioni and Luisa Panconesi, Marco Tolentino, Leonida Ferrarese, and Cecilia Capriotti.