Rumors of a new, more on-road-focused Land Rover model have been swirling since at least last year, and a U.K. trademark filing for the name “Road Rover” is the latest evidence that the brand known for its off-road capability is preparing to branch out with a more civilized offering.
Autocar reports that Land Rover applied for the trademark recently. While it’s true that automakers often file trademark applications for names to prevent others from snatching them first, we’ve heard that the Road Rover name will indeed be used on a future product. The Road Rover is rumored to be a battery-electric crossover riding on a stretched Jaguar I-Pace platform. Sources say that the car is being pitched as a rival to the Mercedes-Benz S-Class. But because the model will be less capable than its Range Rover siblings, JLR wants to give it a different name to avoid diluting the brand’s off-road reputation. Despite the different branding, the Road Rover should still be capable of mild all-terrain duty like the I-Pace.
The Road Rover is said to be in development alongside the next-gen Jaguar XJ, which will also be all-electric, and should appear before 2020. Autocar suggests the Road Rover, just like Range Rover and Discovery, will spawn an entire line of vehicles, which in this case will be more about on-road comfort than off-road prowess.