Originally Posted by Uncle Douglas
My take, and I'm probably completely wrong, is that the business model being used has already ceded the minimalist/offroad market to Jeep and Toyota and is aimed @ the more upscale buyer/ "overlander" demographic. I haven't followed the spy articles about what the new truck might be but I'd bet it will be built on the same platform as one of the other models with simply a different design that pays some homage to the predecessor. Kind of like how the H2 was built on a Tahoe platform but meant to look a little like an H1. Its just not profitable anymore to build vehicles the way the defender was built. Again probably wrong, but I think the values for this truck will continue to rise as supply falls. I do hope some cottage industry types take up making the parts for the trucks. We have taken the nto/new take off parts like tdci doors and bulkheads and seats for granted, that's over. Then again if TATA starts building them in India as you guys said in the other thread, game on, containers of NTO parts from India ! Meeting up in Chesapeake Virginia @ Big Ugly Brewery with forum members, Robert the Davis, Mark Garrenton, Rick Newman, and Trey to raise a pint to the day tomorrow. Anyone interested in joining the fellowship is welcome.
It makes sense that JLR will use an existing platform like the LR4 or upcoming LR5. It will be great on and off road, quiet, and smooth. All JLR has to do is make a "cool looking Defender" top and they will sell. But...I feel like the Defender roots will be lost.
Like others have said before JLR should split Land Rover and Range Rover. I think the current line up for Range Rover is good and they seem to be doing well with it. And I think the new Defender could work well under the RR umbrella.
But they could be doing battle against Jeep and Toyota and even Chevy/Ford/Dodge in mid trucks. They could split off Land Rover and do this:
- make them in India
- 3 models: Defender (or maybe go back to Series nomenclature and have RR use Defender), Discovery (mid size SUV rig) and FC (mid size truck/van)
- one ladder frame but top body could have a bunch of configurations ala RRC, Disco 1, Defender
- work with smaller off road builders (like Rogue and their horizontal/cantilever coil over design) and come up with a simple but strong suspension and axle design. In this day and age guys like Buck are coming up with some great stuff in small shops.
- if possible partner with GM for engines and drivetrains - why the need to design a powerplant when there are so many good ones available "on the shelf"