2004 Land Rover Range Stormer Concept
MUSCULAR AND MODERN DESIGN
The Range Stormer concept car is the
sportiest looking vehicle ever to wear a Land Rover badge.
‘The challenge was to translate fundamental Land Rover design values into a concept for a high performance machine that looks powerful, muscular and edgy,’ says design director Geoff Upex. ‘We certainly want to challenge established views of our vehicles and yet Range Stormer is clearly an authentic Land Rover’.
He continues: ‘It has classic Land Rover design language, such as the clamshell bonnet, “floating roof”, castellated corners on the hood, the straight waistline and short front overhang. Take one look at the vehicle and it’s obviously from Land Rover, and obviously has strong Range Rover genes.’
The pillars are slim to aid visibility – another typical Land Rover quality – and the roof is glass, giving a light and airy feel to the cabin. Less traditional Land Rover cues include the low roofline, power bulge in the hood and the huge 22-inch forged alloy wheels.
The design is peppered with interesting and practical ideas. The doors are a two-piece type: the upper half hinging up and forwards, while the lower half drops to provide a step to the cabin. The doors are electrically powered.
The two-piece tailgate is electric, the upper half lifting and the lower dropping behind the bumper to give optimised access into the loadspace.
Floor compartments rise and lower electrically for improved additional stowage. Fitted leather 'his and her' bags are also neatly incorporated into the side walls.'
Headlamps feature ‘crushed ice’ glass lenses and throw out an excellent light spread from the Bi-Xenon bulbs. These diamond-like lights also swivel with the steering wheel to help the car to ‘see’ around corners. Side-mounted LEDs also illuminate at appropriate steering wheel angles, further improving the driver’s ability to see where the car is heading.
The design lines of the interior are very structural - simple rather than ornate. The dash and centre console flow around the occupants, to deliver a sporty cockpit. Yet there is still the traditional ‘Command Driving’ position, a result of the big glass area and comparatively high driver’s seat.
The interior features four distinctive individual seats. Their radical design is inspired by the concept of the Möbius strip, the deep brown saddle leather facings being cut from a single hide.
‘The saddle leather not only looks fantastic but it is very hard wearing,’ says Geoff Upex. ‘That reflects Land Rover philosophy. Our cars are renowned for their toughness and longevity.’
Natural materials dominate in the cabin, with leather and oak wood alongside aluminium. As well as covering the seats, dark saddle leather is also used on the top roll of the dashboard and centre console. For contrast, the lower facia, door inners and headlining are all finished in ivory leather, and even the floor is covered in a softer, grained leather.
The seat frames, a striking part of the cabin design, are aluminium, as are many of the switches. Others are swathed in leather. Instruments are back-lit, with aluminium faces. The fuel gauge is especially novel. Instead of a needle, a level of liquid drops as the fuel tank empties.
There are two DVD screens in the rear, and one in the front that swivels away when not in use, for the sophisticated information and entertainment systems.
‘The cabin is very simple in its design,’ says Geoff Upex. ‘It is very modern and there is clear lineage to the very structural lines of the Range Rover. But it’s more cocooning than any current Land Rover product, which we think this is very appropriate for a more sporting vehicle.’
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