Way back in 2015, one of the key highlights at Jaguar Land Rover’s Future Tech showcase in Gaydon, was a Remote Control Range Rover Sport research vehicle. The promise was very exciting: a driver could now control their Range Rover from outside the car via their smartphone. The smartphone app would allow the driver to steer, accelerate and brake as well as changing from high and low range, while walking alongside the car.
And now we have it on the 2020 Land Rover Defender.
Essentially, the remote control option will enable you to turn the 2020 Defender into a life-sized remote-controlled car. Meaning you can step outside of the SUV and drive it remotely at low speeds. Interestingly, the feature is being developed for offroading, which is a massive boost to many enthusiasts. Chief product engineer Stuart Frith confirmed to AutoCar that the 2020 Defender is capable of being able to do that in terms of its architecture. Frith added that Jaguar Land Rover’s understands how to implement the remote control tech and has already run prototypes using the technology.
Remote access per se isn’t exactly new. BMW, for instance allows 5 and 7 Series owners to park the car in a tight spot using only the key fob. And Tesla is about to incorporate its Smart Summon feature in its Version 10.0 software release.
The key differentiator here, of course, is that the remote control option on the 2020 Defender is being specifically developed for offroading.
Watch this space for more updates!