Discovery to receive non-performance SVO treatment
While Land Rover is preparing for the release of the Discovery 5 later this year, we can now confirm that it will be adding a Special Vehicle Operations version of the newcomer to the line-up.
SVO (Special Vehicle Operations) is a relatively new branch within Jaguar Land Rover and has already been responsible for the Range Rover Sport SVR and the Jaguar F-Type SVR. These performance specials may have created the impression that SVO is similar in concept to BMW’s M-Division, but in truth its mandate is not only to create fast cars, but capable ones too.
The Discovery SVX will be the first of the marque’s built-for-capability special editions and will shove a host of terrain-conquering technology into the body of the new Discovery.
This SVX will be a first for SVO but not the last, as it has indicated that the next-generation Defender range will also include an extended-capability SVX halo model.
Little is know about the actual technology that will propel the Discovery from HSE to SVX status, but we do know that JLR has been experimenting with some interesting all-terrain toys.
One example is a system that projects the ground underneath the engine of the vehicle onto the windscreen, overlapping the terrain so that the driver can ‘see through’ the body of the SUV.
It is unlikely that this will make it to the Discovery 5 SVX, but it shows the kiind of thinking that SVO is using to distinguish its vehicles, not only from standard Discovery models, but from special models produced by AMG, M and Audi’s quattro division.
The SVX will only appear 12-18 months after the new Discovery launches, but JLR has mentioned South Africa by name as one of the territories where the vehicle will make sense, due to the subcontinent’s extreme terrain. Other areas identified include the Middle East, the snow belt in the United States, and Australia.