Watch 70 years of Land Rover history in one show!

By Dave Abrahams Time of article published Apr 30, 2018

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Whitley, West Midlands - Seventy years ago, on 30 April 1948, a short-coupled, pretty basic agricultural workhorse made its debut at the Amsterdam motor show, and a global icon was born.

And last night Jaguar Land Rover celebrated seven decades of the world’s favourite 4 x 4 x far with an online broadcast starring the cars and the people who love them, across 70 years of adventure, soldiering, humanitarian aid and just plain hard work around the world.

The programme shows how the Land Rover was designed - basically as a tractor with a central driving position and a rudimentary aluminium body - and went on to found a dynasty of beetle-crushers, seven million strong and counting.

1956: The Oxford and Cambridge London to Singapore expedition.

It features footage of the people behind the legend and the groundbreaking (sometimes literally!) models of the early years, together with a parade of surviving classic Land Rovers, including HUE 166, the first series production Land Rover, the original two-door Range Rover and the first seven-seater Discovery, as well as some of the ‘expedition’ specials that made the Defender a movie star in the days when tobacco advertising was still legal.

1981: Back in the days when tobacco advertising was still legal.

Also on stage at the Land Rover Classic workshop in Coventry is one very special example: since January 2018 the Classic workshop team has been busy renovating one of the original three unrestored pre-production Amsterdam show cars from 1948.

It makes its first public appearance in many years on this show, alongside its closest current derivative - the 298kW

, of which just 150 will be handbuilt in the Land Rover Classic shop.

LAND ROVER TIMELINE

1948

Land Rover Series I launched at the Amsterdam Motor Show

1953

Long Wheelbase version of the Series I introduced

1956

Oxford and Cambridge teams complete London to Singapore expedition

1958

Land Rover Series II released

1970

Original two-door Range Rover goes on sale

1971

Land Rover Series III launched

1972

Range Rover crosses Darien Gap on 30 000km Trans-America expedition

1976

One millionth Land Rover built

1979

A Range Rover wins the inaugural Paris-Dakar rally (and again in 1981)

1981

Land Rover begins partnership with Camel Trophy

1981

Four-door Range Rover released

1989

Discovery - the third Land Rover model - goes on sale

1990

Original ‘Landie’ relaunched and renamed Defender

1994

Second generation Range Rover launched

1997

Freelander is unveiled with Hill Descent Control

2001

Third-generation Range Rover with all-round independent air suspension revealed

2003

Inaugural G4 challenge sees 16 teams cross the United States, South Africa and Australia

2004

 

2005

 

2006

 

2009

 

2010

 

2010

 

2013

 

2014

 

2015

Evoque Convertible goes on sale

2015

Land Rover 'Defender 2 000 000' sells for £400 000 at charity auction

2016

Last Defender rolls off the production line

2016

All-new Discovery launched

2017

Land Rover launches the fourth Range Rover, the Velar

2018

Limited Edition Range Rover SV Coupé debuts at Geneva Motor Show

IOL Motoring

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