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Range Rovers Are in High Demand, But Land Rover Can’t Keep Up

2013 Land Rover Range Rover image

With the great recession now somewhat in our rear-view mirror, consumers are heading to car dealers and snapping up the latest new models. Some automakers are enjoying the new found enthusiastic, but others are struggling to meet demand. Among the automakers falling into the latter category is Land Rover, which is finding it difficult to meet demand.

Land Rover’s lineup has changed dramatically in a short period of time. Most recently, it launched its all-new Range Rover Sport. Not too long before that, the all-new Range Rover debuted, setting the bar once again for luxury SUVs. It’s smaller Evoque crossover is still a fresh offering that continues to earn praise from consumers and the media alike.

All that fresh sheet metal is helping to lure people to showrooms, but as a result there are long wait times for some parts of the world, preventing consumers from getting their hands on the latest Land Rover models. In some cases, the long wait times have forced premiums for those that want to guarantee they’ll be first in line when model arrive. Take China, for instance, where consumers are will to pay up to an 60,000-euro ($81,024) to be the first to get their hands on a new Range Rover.

Despite demand, Land Rover won’t be able to easy supply troubles anytime soon. The factory at Solihull, where the Range Rover, Range Rover Sport, Discovery/LR4 and Defender are built, is running 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and still can’t build vehicles fast enough. And, the Ford-built engines that power some of these vehicles are also in short supply.

Land Rover, along with Jaguar, will begin producing its own range of four-cylinder engines starting in 2015. The modular powerplant could be doubled in size to eight cylinders, but the business case to build a V8 in-house hasn’t been made yet. With supply issues abound, it’s clear that Land Rover grossly underestimated the popularity of its two most recent SUVs. It’s a good problem to have, but a problem nonetheless.

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