2003 Range Rover New Car Test Drive
Everything about the 2003 Range Rover is totally new, save for the badges and tailgate latch. It's quicker and more agile on the road than the previous version, yet it retains Land Rover's pedigree for traversing the backcountry.
This marks only the third time that Land Rover has revamped its flagship since the Range Rover's introduction in 1970. What you won't notice at first glance is that the newest Range Rover is loaded with technology and BMW engineering. What you will notice once you open the door is that it comes with a beautiful interior.
Unlike the previous versions, the 2003 Range Rover was engineered with assistance from BMW. Land Rover belonged to BMW briefly, but has since been purchased by Ford. Land Rover is now part of Ford's Premier Automotive Group, along with British automakers Jaguar and Aston Martin. Land Rover builds four-wheel-drive products exclusively.
Land Rover says its flagship sails in a class by itself. That's largely true. Legendary off-road prowess comes in a cabin that will coddle and comfort you, as well as nestle you in the latest in safety refinements. Upscale competitors include the Mercedes-Benz G-Wagon with notable 4x4 capability but a utilitarian cabin, and the Lexus LX 470, essentially a Toyota Land Cruiser with bland Lexus styling cues that offers a well-appointed cockpit but less competence off road.
Range Rover is available as one model for 2003. It's powered by a 4.4-liter BMW engine. Though only one trim level is offered, Land Rover offers a choice of interior styles, woods and leathers.
The 2003 Range Rover ($71,200) comes free scheduled maintenance for the duration of the new vehicle limited warranty. Now standard are bi-xenon headlamps and a premium harman/kardon 15-speaker surround sound system.