Land Rover took a gamble in introducing the Evoque compact SUV under its flagship Range Rover line, but that gamble has paid off handsomely for the company, with global sales approaching 100,000 units since its launch, and the Halewood factory running 24 hours to meet demand. But the Evoque may not be the last small SUV that Land Rover produces.
Land Rover design chief Gerry McGovern, in an interview with Automotive News Europe, said, "In a world focusing on sustainability, you could argue that smaller and lighter is the way to go." Unclear is whether the potential sub-compact model would be marketed under the Land Rover or Range Rover brand.
Land Rover is not alone among upscale brands in looking at going smaller in its SUV offerings. Audi is reportedly considering a Q1 crossover, even smaller than the Q3 currently offered in Europe, and Mercedes is looking at one or more SUV models based on its A-Class architecture. Even premium American brands are getting into the act, with Buick introducing the Encore compact crossover, and Lincoln reportedly preparing an upscale version of the recently-redesigned Ford Escape.