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The acquisition of Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) by Tata Motors Ltd. from Ford continues to hurt the Indian automaker as the two British brands recorded a combined net loss of $1.11 billion in 2008.
As a sign of the troubled economic times, in 2007 the two automakers managed a total net profit of roughly one billion dollars.
Tata has worked hard to cut costs across the board and has introduced several new models which it hopes will boost sales, especially now that the auto-sector (and the economy) seems poised for recovery. New models include the significantly revised 2010 Range Rover and Range Rover Sport as well as the LR4 (pictured above). And in the Jaguar division JLR recently lunched a new flagship XJ, which leaves behind the traditional Jaguar design for a more broad-based look that the automaker hopes will help it compete with higher-volume German rivals.
In order to keep operations running in the short term Tata is currently working out a loan agreement with the British government, the value of which is reportedly worth around $290 million. The money is all but guaranteed, however, the British government would like a short 6-month term to re-pay the loan, whereas Tata is asking for 12 months. The British government is also seeking a spot on Tata’s board, to ensure its money is being spent wisely.
[Source: Automotive News]
The new Range Rover and Range Rover Sport may only look slightly different from the ’09 models; and while there are some aesthetic changes, the real difference for both vehicles lies under their respective hoods.
Standard models will get a new 5.0-liter V8 engine that makes 375hp and 375 ft-lbs of torque. This is an increase of 20 percent on the horsepower side and 16 percent on the torque side. Better yet, the new engine boasts a seven percent increase in fuel consumption over the outgoing engine.
In the Sport model, this enough to achieve a 0-60 mph time of 7.2 seconds.
As for the Supercharged versions, they get a powerful new supercharged 5.0-liter engine with 510hp and 461 ft-lbs of torque. These models can run the 60 mph sprint in just 5.9 seconds - not bad for some of the heaviest vehicles ever made.
To help give the Range Rover Sport an even more sporty feel, it will be equipped with paddle shifters.
Another important highlight is the use of an adaptive damping suspension on Range Rover Sport Supercharged models. Working with the existing Dynamic Response system, this new setup uses DampTronic Valve Technology shocks which adjust 500 times a second, reacting to the road conditions. Both a “soft” and a “hard” setting can be pre-selected to better suit the driver’s needs.
There are plenty more innovations on the new models, but we’ll end off with a final tech gadget. On the Range Rover Sport, a 5-inch Thin Film Transistor (TFT) info screen (like the one introduced on the current 7 Series) will sit inside the instrument cluster, providing the driver with vehicle information. Rather than static physical readouts, the info is projected on the screen, which reverts to its black “off” setting when the vehicle is turned off. The Range Rover will employ a similar TFT screen measuring 12-inches, doing away with any physical gauges.
GALLERY: 2010 Range Rover and Range Rover Sport
More on the 2010 Range Rover and Range Rover Sport after the jump: