Sat | Dec 16, 2017

Stewart pre-orders Range Rover Velars priced at $16-$19m

Published:Sunday | November 19, 2017 | 12:00 AMSteven Jackson
Duncan Stewart, managing director of Stewart's automotive group beside a Range Rover Velar.

Stewarts Automotive group launched the Velar, the newest line to the luxury Range Rover family, last Tuesday and indicated that it already has preorders for 10 clients.

Jamaica joins the world in launching the highest-end Velars in its introduction year, ostensibly as part of a marketing approach by the Range Rover company. Despite the price tag at more than many luxury apartments, Stewarts Automotive, which runs the Range Rover dealership, stated that sales and pre-orders are going strong.

"This is Jamaica. We like to profile. We have already sold four and have a line-up of 10 persons waiting," said Nedita Gibson, brand sales manager, Stewart Auto Gallery, in response to a query from the Financial Gleaner at the launch on South Camp Road in Kingston.

The Velar sits between the Evoque and Range Rover Sport in terms of size and will sell for between $16.5 million and $19 million, depending on the customer specifications.

"We have persons literally waiting in a line. So there is no concern for us. We only need more. We are begging for more," she added when asked if the R-Dynamic HSE models set for introduction were too pricey. "We are really going to do a fabulous job of gaining market share. We have no concern but to get the stock."

Jamaica joins a series of Latin American markets that launched the Velar this month, said Elardinho Godhino Jr, regional business manager, Jaguar Land Rover, told the Financial Gleaner.

"It is the correct price and approach to the Jamaican market. This car takes us to a blank space in the market," claimed Godhino in his address at the launch.

The Velar was initially introduced in the Range Rover family in the 1970s and was discontinued and reintroduced nearly 50 years later. It becomes the fourth member of the Range Rover family.

 

DESIGN QUEUES

 

The design of the Velar, essentially a mid-sized SUV, will transcend itself. As a concept vehicle, which entered into production, the Velar will influence future models of existing Land Rover vehicles. Already, the Range Rover Vogue 2018 has adopted daytime running lights and interior touchscreens which allude to the Velar. Five years ago, the Evoque represented a similar design guide, and many of the subsequent models followed design queues from the Evoque, including the Land Rover Sport and Range Rover Sport.

The Velar features the Touch Pro Duo infotainment system, featuring two high-definition 10-inch touchscreens with intuitive operation and functionality. On the exterior, it comes with superslim Matrix-Laser LED headlights and door handles that depress into the body of the car, offering less drag.

"The Velar has carved out its own space in the world of luxury SUVs, and with its unrivalled heritage and superior design, it is poised to position itself as a trendsetter," said Godhino.

Duncan Stewart, managing director at Stewarts Automotive, described the Velar as a vehicle that adequately offsets the challenges of driving on Jamaican roads.

Stewarts Automotive group operates the car dealerships for Mercedez Benz, Mitsubishi, Suzuki, and Jaguar and Range Rover. It's a family business, with three family members at the helm including Duncan Stewart; chairman, Diana Stewart; and director Jacqueline Stewart Lechler. Stewarts operates four entities, with four showrooms, four parts warehouses, four workshops, two heavy-duty workshops, a body shop, four rental locations, and four aftermarket retail operations.

steven.jackson@gleanerjm.com