Land Rover has celebrated the 50th anniversary of its flagship Range Rover model with a parade at Goodwood SpeedWeek. Some 50 examples of the big 4x4 joined the parade, including rare and one-off examples from the model’s half-century-long history.
The eclectic mix of vehicles was led by a 1969 drivable chassis, which was originally developed to allow engineers to monitor suspension and powertrain over rough terrain, along with a brand-new limited-edition Range Rover ‘Fifty’ – one of 1,970 built to mark the car’s birthday.
Further along the parade were other notable participants, including a modified ambulance and a 6x6 fire engine, while the Trans-American Expedition car, which crossed the all-but-impassable Darien Gap in 1971, also featured. That was joined by a 2004 car that saw service with Greater Manchester Police and some classic Range Rovers from the early 1970s.
After the parade, the same cars came together to create a ‘50’ formation coordinated by professional drivers and captured using a drone. To achieve the desired effect, all 50 vehicles and drivers had to undergo training during the day to precisely navigate and position each vehicle.
Both the parade and the 50 formation was broadcast on Goodwood.com on Friday, October 16, as part of the SpeedWeek event. Created after the Festival of Speed and Revival were called off due to the coronavirus pandemic, the event combines elements of each occasion, and broadcasts the whole thing live on the internet.
The event is also being broadcast on television, with ITV showing parts of the event on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Although it isn’t the same as the events Goodwood originally wanted to host when the year began, the estate is hoping to make the best of the circumstances and put the digital experience “at the heart” of SpeedWeek.
“As we continue to celebrate Range Rover’s 50th Anniversary throughout 2020, it has been a pleasure to remind ourselves not only of some of the extraordinary forms that the Range Rover has taken over the years, but also the people and stories behind them,” said Rawdon Glover, the managing director of Jaguar Land Rover UK.
“Of course, the gathering was aptly marked by the debut of the new Range Rover Fifty limited edition which epitomises the design, luxury and capability Range Rover stands for today. I would personally like to express my thanks to the owners and collectors who contributed to the event, helping us celebrate this significant milestone in Range Rover’s heritage.”