Re: Call me sceptical
"If you mean 'lost their way' by deploying an innovation strategy which has significantly increased profits, company liquidity, market share and created a significant number of jobs, then I completely agree. Its terrible to see them using a well recognized brand to excellent commercial ends with significant improvement in the company long term perspectives, they should have just stuck to making LWB off-roaders for the agricultural community. Or perhaps not.
Companies need to adapt or die, JLR is a poster child for how to do that right (both nearly dying and then adapting)"
Yes. And no. The reason Defenders are barely profitable is because they only make about 20k/yr and can't sell them into the USA on account of no airbags and various other features.
However, there is a massive market for them - which is why people are busy buying ex-MoD Wolfs that are pre-1987 or so (old enough to count as classic under US law, therefore not subject to normal airbag requirements, etc) and exporting them.
There is a massive latent market in the US for a utility LR, not just lifestyle/SUV Land Rovers.
I have no problem with the lifestyle end of LR's range, but that doesn't mean they shouldn't also serve the agricultural and utility end (when there is a clear and profitable market for it, both in Europe and in the US if they build something compliant).
The DC100 wasn't just not what farmers wanted, it was a bad joke - here you are farmers, have a stylish beach buggy. That's what you want to throw your tools in the back of. Isn't it? No? Really? But, our arts graduates thought... Oh.
If you want to sell a beach buggy, then go for it - sounds fun! But don't have the cheek to turn around and pitch it as your new utility vehicle and the successor to the Defender that you honestly expect utility users to buy.
If you're not going to serve that market place then then we're very sorry to hear that. But just stop, don't waste your time and effort making these stupid prototypes that clearly don't address the market they are ostensibly designed for.