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Land Rover considering making a smaller SUV

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Land Rover is considering making a compact premium SUV that would rival the likes of the Mercedes GLA, according to Paul Cleaver, the current programme director.

Cleaver admitted there is space in the line up for a mid-sized SUV during the launch of the new Land Rover Discovery Sport in Iceland, this week.

Although there’s currently no suitable platform in the Jaguar Land Rover line-up for the new car to use, the British car firm hasn’t ruled out a working alongside another manufacturer in order to produce the car.

“There are so many prototypes running around Gaydon [one of Jaguar Land Rover’s testing sites] these days – there are more than I have ever seen before,” he told Car Dealer magazine.

“The Discovery Sport is just the start of the Discovery “pillar” of the business and all will become clear as to why we called it that in the future.”

Cleaver added that he had seen some ‘amazing things’ as he walked around Land Rover’s research and development facility and is excited about the prospect many of them hold. But it’s a smaller model really interests him.

“There is definitely a market for it,” he commented. “No other manufacturer is doing it well.”

He could well be right, as currently there are very few car manufacturers that have been able to crack the compact off-roader market – especially with an upmarket model. The closest rival in this segment would be the Mercedes GLA, although Audi is rumoured to be planning a Q1 as part of their huge range expansion planned for the future.

Cleaver will continue to work on the Discovery Sport for another year before moving on to something else. When asked if that would be the smaller model he remained tight lipped about the idea.

Author: Padraig Mallett

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