Facing growing competition from high-priced rivals, Land Rover has seen fit to supplement the already swanky SVAutobiography with a new Ultimate trim level. The latest model comes with JLR's supercharged V8 or P400e hybrid four-pot setup, and starts from £147,441, raising to £183,706 for the 565hp headliner. That money buys you a car trimmed with higher-grade materials and bearing a few bespoke additions over the SVAutobiography, developed by Land Rover SV Bespoke services, no less. With the plaques to prove it.
While those demanding anything more than is already on offer in the 'regular' SVAutobiography might be doing so purely for the benefit of the local league of one-upmanship, there are of course, plenty of lovely standard features to appreciate. Like, for example, a 'recommended' interior specification that wraps the cabin in vintage tan leather and with copper weave carbonfibre trim to match. Leather can even be ordered in from Italian artisans at Poltrona Frau for a, in JLR's words, "truly cosseting experience". You also get a newly developed satin Orchard Green paint scheme, with a Narvik Black roof and copper detailing, so the outside stays appropriately old money.
The car comes as standard with 22-inch forged alloy wheels, finished in gloss dark grey with a contrasting diamond turned finish. It wears graphite coloured exterior trim, while inside, the metal work includes knurled finish for the gearbox rotary controller, starter button and pedals. Oh, and you get anodised red flappy paddles, said to "underline the performance focus of SVAutobiography Dynamic", which the Ultimate version builds on.
It's all rather lovely, especially in the long-wheelbase version (the short is also available should you be on a budget...), which gets standard-fit powered rear doors, reclining and heated/cooled rear seats, with a hot stone massage function in all seats that extends to the calves in the back. You also get the poshest SVAutobiography centre console with an integrated Zenith timepiece up front, a refrigerated compartment and deployable tables in the back.
We suspect much of the take up will be for the V8 model, not least because spending well over £140k on a four-pot car, even one hybridised up to 400hp with an admittedly clever setup, isn't exactly going to be an easy sell. Plus, we get the impression buyers of a three-tonne SUV probably aren't too bothered about trimming CO2, unless they're forced to by local regulations, that is. We'll take an educated guess and assume that urban buyers will represent the vast majority of take-up for the P400e.
"Range Rover has defined the luxury SUV segment for more than half a century, with our SVAutobiography models offering customers a world-class travel experience - whether driving, or being driven," said Mark Turner, commercial director of the Special Vehicle Operations division. "These new Ultimate editions elevate that refinement and sophistication even further." Certainly it goes about as far as you'd think possible for the L405 base. For now at least, these are to be the, er, ultimate expression of Range Rover luxury. Until the new one arrives, at least...
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