Car news

12 August 2014

This is the first ever Range Rover

And it’s coming up for sale. Is this, quite simply, the coolest Range Rover ever?

Vijay Pattni
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Yesterday, Land Rover announced the fastest-ever production Range Rover in history, the SVR.

But if you want a piece of real history, then look no further, because today, Silverstone Auctions has also announced the first ever Range Rover - as in, first ever - is coming up for sale.

It's this olive green, 1970 RR, chassis #001, that will be sold under auction on 4 September in London. It's estimated to sell for an amount in excess of Rs 1 crore, which is a considerable sum for an old Range Rover, but for the very first one in mint condition? That's a bit different.

So, it was registered on 2 January 1970, some six months before the official launch of the Range Rover, and was originally sold to a chap named Michael Furlong. Furlong was the producer behind two promotional films for the then-new Rangie.

By 1975, #001 had changed colour to Bahama Gold (yes, that happened), and passed onto a new owner, before becoming a bit ‘lost' - not existentially, but actually lost - until the current owner found it in the 1990s.

Upon doing so, this new owner spent six years restoring the RR back to full physical and mechanical health, as well as repainting it olive green. Thankfully. It's a ‘matching numbers' RR too, meaning the chassis, engine, gearbox and axles, as well as the aluminium bonnet, are all original.

What engine, you cry? A 3.5-litre Rover V8 with a whopping 135bhp, bolted onto a ladder chassis with four-wheel-drive. Not exactly Nürburgring fodder, but all the better for it.

At this point, we're pondering the notion of a mint condition Range Rover. Shouldn't all old Rangies be dog-eared, slightly rough-around-the-edges buckets? There's no denying this first ever, mint condition RR is a cool thing, but isn't a slightly knackered one even cooler?

Tags: range rover, land rover

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