Land Rover will unveil a high-performance SUV concept called the Range Stormer at the Detroit Show next month. Will this model attract a different kind of buyer to the ubiquitous Range Rover label?

Land Rover will unveil a high-performance SUV concept called the Range Stormer at the Detroit Show next month. Will this model attract a different kind of buyer to the ubiquitous Range Rover label?

Land Rover first exhibited a sketch of the concept at the Frankfurt Motor Show. The picture showed a visual departure from the Defender's historic square shape. The model appeared low-roofed and aerodynamic with sharply-raked windscreen and huge wheel arches and wheels.

Land Rover said: "Range Stormer is a modern, striking high-technology vehicle. It is very much conceived to be an on-road, high-performance machine, as well as class-leading off-road like all Land Rovers. Breadth of ability is one of its many strengths."

Design director Geoff Upex added: "It is possible to apply Land Rover design language to a vehicle of totally different proportions and still make it very obviously a Land Rover. This is what we've done here, and the result is a Land Rover like nothing that has been seen before."

A keen on-road driving experience is the aim, and given how well the hefty Range Rover drives the signs are promising. But, this vehicle will be waltzing into the hugely popular, and hence highly-competitive, SUV market.

It will have to prove itself against the existing Mercedes Benz ML55 and the BMW X5 (which will soon launch a 4,8iS derivative). It will also be pitted against the Porsche Cayenne and the Maserati Kubang, set for release in 2007.

The vehicle will probably be launched in 2005 as the 'Range Rover Sport', after the launch of the all-new Discovery range.

Original article from Car