MONTICELLO, New York -- Jaguar Land Rover is joining its high-end competitors in the lucrative performance and luxury derivative business.
Launched last summer, JLR's Special Vehicle Operations unit has developed three vehicles. The latest is the Range Rover Sport SVR -- priced at $111,400 in the key U.S. market, about $30,000 more than the base supercharged V-8 model. To date, about 1,600 have been ordered globally.
SVO was created because customers asked Jaguar Land Rover to "take some of the vehicles further in a specific direction," said Stuart Adlard, senior vehicle engineering manager for SVO.
Like its competition -- BMW's M and Mercedes-Benz's AMG lines, for instance -- SVO will enable Jaguar and Land Rover to charge tens of thousands of dollars more for exclusive, low-volume vehicles with special badges and features.
"We have a great range of vehicles, and there is always an opportunity to take each of those to see how we can extend them," said Adlard, 47. "There are customers that want something that is a little more sporty or more luxurious."
The SVO engineering arm in Warwickshire, England, has a core team of about 70 employees and another 100 who build vehicles, said Adlard.