Some motor manufacturers are having serious problems right now, such that a few have closed factories, laid off staff and even sold brands. But as in Animal Farm, some problems aren’t really problems as we understand them. Take the case of Jaguar Land Rover for instance. The British brand owned by India’s Tata Motors sure has its own problems, but they are not what you may think.
Both the new Range Rover and Range Rover Sport are selling like ecstasy pills at a rave. In fact, the company just cannot keep up with demand, according to a recent report from Automotive News. There is a waiting list at least 6 months long on both cars, with the Sport clocking up to 9 months. Why, the potential buyer could have had a brand new baby by then!
One of the problems according to this report, is that JLR grossly underestimated demand for both cars, which can go up to R1.8 million a pop in South Africa (Sport not launched yet). As a result the Solihull, England factory from which they come, runs for 24 hours a day, seven days a week, non-stop.
The other problem is that Ford, previously an owner of JRL, still supplies the company with engines for both its divisions. Apparently Ford is also unable to match this rampant demand. These are problems one only dreams about.
In terms of what is on the engine equipment list at launch, we can see the 3.0-litre SDV6 turbo diesel with 215kW and the 375kW 5.0-litre V8 supercharged for the performance model. In 2014 there will be added engines, including a super 4.4 diesel worth 249kW, a milder 190kW V6 diesel, petrol as well as a hybrid. The gearbox is an 8-speed automatic system. Land Rover says 0 – 100km/h acceleration times start at 5.2 seconds across the range (pun intended), meaning the V8 will dip below this. We’ll ascertain these claims when we drive it.
The Range Rover is already on sale here in Mzansi, while the new Range Rover Sport only goes on sale in November following its public debut at the 2013 Johannesburg International Motor Show (JIMS) in two weeks’ time. Neither prices nor Mzansi launch models have been confirmed yet.