JLR: No, Land Rover name isn’t dead

Darwin Brandis

“The rumors of my death have been greatly exaggerated.” This mild misquote, attributed to Mark Twain in 1897, could just as easily be applied to Land Rover. This week, the internet blew up over suggestions that the British brand might not just “Go Beyond” but disappear completely.

The misunderstanding came about when the CEO of Jaguar Land Rover, Adrian Mardell, announced that Range Rover, Defender, and Discovery would join Jaguar as separate brands under the umbrella of a company called simply JLR. (Not an acronym for JLR. Just … JLR.) The fact that the words “Land Rover” were notably absent from the presentation caused pundits to lose their minds. “Land Rover brand dead” and “Land Rover name killed off after 75 years” read headlines.

The truth is far less dramatic.

1992 Land Rover Defender rear decal detail
Matt Tierney

The official line from JLR reads: “We want to reassure clients that Land Rover will remain the trust mark that underpins the world-leading capability offered across Range Rover, Defender, and Discovery vehicles, building on 75 years of technological and engineering expertise. As a House of Brands, Range Rover, Defender, Discovery, and Jaguar now step forward as individual marques, projecting their individual purpose, desirability, and personality. Under this approach, we will amplify the unique character of each of the brands, accelerating the delivery of our vision to be the Proud Creators of Modern Luxury.

“We are not losing the Land Rover name; its spirit is—and will continue to be—a crucial part of our DNA.”

A JLR spokeswoman confirmed that the historic green oval will live on. “The Land Rover logo will still appear on cars. It will also be subtly in dealerships as a trust-mark,” she told Hagerty.

2000 Range Rover Holland & Holland rear
Alister Thorpe / Land Rover

So the reality is that it’s more or less business as usual. Nobody ever said they drive a Land Rover Range Rover, even if that were technically true, so the flagship model is unaffected. The latest Defender and Discovery have never worn the Land Rover badge across their noses, either.

Those who were so quick to jump to the wrong conclusion could do worse than to pay attention to Twain actually did say: “It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt.”


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    As I step forward into the comments section to amplify my understanding, I hesitate to add that it wasn’t Twain who said “it is better to remain silent…” rather Maurice Switzer in the book Mrs Goose, Her book.

    Hey Figgy…

    Abe Lincoln also said (almost the same words) as does Proverbs.

    Why critique the article? Why not just remain silent?

    Some guy named Solomon 2,950 years ago, “Even a fool who keeps silent is considered wise.”

    Twain did write, “As if there was much of anything in any human utterance, oral or written, except plagiarism!”

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