Nearly four decades ago, Land Rover launched the first generation Range Rover in 1970. It was upgraded several times (with new engines, transmissions, and variants), but the same basic vehicle remained in production for 26 years.

Land Rover is getting ready to celebrate the Range Rover's 40th birthday on June 17th.

Nearly four decades ago, Land Rover launched the first Range Rover in 1970.  It was upgraded several times (with new engines, transmissions, and variants), but the same basic vehicle remained in production for 26 years. 317,615 units were built.

In 1994, the second generation (aka the P38a) was introduced. It helped to redefine the segment and usher in a new era of luxury SUVs. Seven years later, the current generation (aka the L322) went on sale.

According to Phil Popham, Land Rover's Managing Director, "Land Rover has a unique history of product innovation. But the Range Rover probably remains the most historically significant vehicle we have ever launched. It is one of the most important vehicles in the history of motoring."

Check out the press release for additional information.

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Range Rover celebrates 40th birthday [Video]