The Thirsty Range Rover

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Sir,

Being an ardent enthusiast of Motor Sport over many years, may I firstly congratulate you on this excellent publication? Living here in France, the magazine gives me a superb revamp once a month, especially on the very stimulating English motor scene. It is in this respect that I read your December editorial with special interest and I too am slightly surprised to see British Leyland having to take a helping hand from Japan to get their new models on the road. In fact, it is on one such British Leyland product that I would like to pass some observations, in the hope that somebody within their management will take note.

I have been driving a Range Rover for nearly two years in a country where petrol is by this time reaching incredible prices with increases it seems at almost two-weekly intervals and I took special interest in your remark “. . . Spen King’s splendid, go-anywhere-in-comfort Range Rover . . .” Our Range Rover consumes precious petrol at anything between 21-25 litres per 100km., i.e. at worst therefore, only 4 km. to the litre! Among our friends here also driving Range Rovers, everybody seems to be in the same ball-park, saying “it’s a superb car, certainly go-anywhere-in-comfort, but at a ridiculous price  . . .” In these times where energy-saving is the order of the day, I cannot understand why BL have not introduced a more thrifty engine, either by a petrol injection system, or by possibly considering an alternative carburettor system for this car.

Will we again have to wait until the Japanese help create a new model, or will the Range Rover lose out to competitive names such as Mercedes, Fiat etc.?

Grasse, France – A. Baron Freytag, Von Loringhoven