SMMT News UK Manufacturing

Land Rover launches LAND_e environmental technology concept vehicle

03 March 2006 #SMMT News #UK Manufacturing

Land Rover has launched a series of new technologies which will see reductions in both fuel consumption and CO2 emissions for future models. The technologies in the new concept vehicle, LAND_e, promises 30 per cent better fuel economy (approaching 50mpg) and an approximate tailpipe emission of 150g/km of CO2. The technologies will start to be fitted to Land Rover production models in the next few years.

Over the past nine years, CO2 emissions from Land Rover models have fallen by 13 per cent, compared with the motor industry’s overall average improvement of 9.7 per cent. The Freelander Td4 diesel’s CO2 emissions compare with many smaller vehicles, and the seven-seater Discovery 3 TDV6 has CO2 emissions to match many saloons. The new 2006 Range Rover V8 has seen its CO2 emissions improve by 11 per cent on those of the outgoing 2005 model.

Matthew Taylor, managing director of Land Rover, said, ‘The new technologies are practical, feasible, real-world solutions. In every case, they preserve – and in most cases improve – our breadth of capability. We are not prepared to dilute the essence of Land Rover. But we are committed to improving fuel economy and reducing CO2 emissions.’


The technologies in the LAND_e include:

Hybrid system

This system uses an electric-powered unit in slow traffic conditions, restarting the engine at 32mph This brings significant gains in fuel consumption and lower CO2 emissions, particular in towns. The Integrated Electric Rear Axle Drive system transfers energy generated under braking from the wheels to a storage battery. The system uses this electric power in low speed traffic.

Land Rover’s system helps maintain its 4×4 capabilities by offering better low-speed control; very useful on slippery surfaces or when towing. For harder braking and for emergency stops, the conventional braking system is retained and fully operational, working in conjunction with the regenerative braking function.

Stop-start technology

The Land_e includes a new Integrated Starter-Generator which stops the engine whenever the vehicle comes to a halt, such as in heavy traffic. When the driver presses the accelerator, the engine restarts quickly and smoothly. The engine does not idle when the vehicle is stationary, further improving fuel economy and cutting unnecessary pollutants in town centres.

Different settings for different ground conditions

Land_e has six settings presets for different terrain conditions. The system re-configures all the vehicle’s systems for optimum fuel economy. The six presets are General Driving; Sand; Mud and Ruts; Grass, Gravel and Snow; and Rock Crawl. The different settings allow the vehicle to appropriately source power and utilise the correct braking, acceleration and torque capabilities.

Move to 25 per cent bio-diesel

Land Rover will be optimising their new engines to run on bio-diesel with a mix of up to 25 per cent. Currently, bio-diesel of up to five per cent is available in forecourt diesel.

Bio-diesel is made using renewable and sustainable sources, such as natural oils from soya beans or other easily cultivated vegetable or cereal crops.

Next generation bio-fuels made from crop wastes are also being developed, and these will deliver even more sustainable motoring.

Reusing exhaust fumes

The Land_e also showcases this important new technology. The Exhaust Heat Recovery System uses wasted heat from the exhaust system, and pumps it back into the engine to encourage faster engine and gearbox warm-up from cold. Faster engine and catalyst warm-up significantly reduces emissions in the first minutes after a cold start. Bringing engine and gearbox oils up to operating temperature more quickly reduces mechanical frictional losses and therefore improves an engine’s efficiency.

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