Features

What is Jaguar Land Rover SVO? - JLR's Special Vehicle Operations explained

The SVO brand continues to expand within the JLR group, but what is it and what does it do?

You may have seen the SVO (Special Vehicle Operations) badge affixed to variants that top certain Jaguars and Land Rovers, but what does that little round insignia actually represent? 

Well, the SVO brand does exactly what it says on the tin; it engineers and develop JLR's more specialised vehicles, versions that sit outside of the mainstream ranges, whether they be luxury or performance focused.

Subscribe to evo magazine

evo is 21 and to celebrate, we're returning to 1998 prices! Subscribe now to SAVE 39% on the shop price and get evo for its original cover price of £3.00 an issue, plus get a FREE gift worth £25!

Re-launched in 2014, the SVO brand has been set up to bring all of JLR's specialist, low volume products and services under the one roof, with the plan to continue expanding in order to create an AMG-like halo brand overarching the entire JLR group.

The importance of SVO is such that JLR saw fit to build a new 20,000sqm technical centre, housing a specialist manufacturing facility and paint shop supporting 200 SVO specific staff.

What SVO does within Jaguar Land Rover 

So far, SVO develops its vehicles into various sub-brands, each with their own distinct ethos. SVR was the first to appear, and is used for high-performance flagships. SVRs are developed with a sporting angle and must adhere to the pre-requisites of offering a more powerful engine with less weight and improved driving dynamics.

Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below

So far we have seen two cars with the SVR badge, with the Range Rover Sport being first to undergo the transformation. The results were impressive as the RR Sport SVR gave traditionally more dynamic rivals like the Porsche Cayenne Turbo and BMW X5 M a good run for their money while maintaining Range Rover’s unimpeachable off-road ability. The SVR is differentiated from lesser Range Rover Sports by a more powerful 542bhp supercharged 5.0-litre V8 engine, unique styling, upgraded interior and a set of significant chassis upgrades.

> Click here to read our review of the Range Rover Sport SVR

This duality of nature was also infused into SVR’s second model, the F-Type SVR. The car utilised Jaguar's most potent V8 engine and performance orientated chassis set up, while not compromising on the grand touring aspirations of the F-Type.

>Click here to read our review of the Jaguar F-Type SVR

But SVO is not just about performance engineering; the second badge to appear was the SV Autobiography moniker on high specification Range Rovers. Here the game isn’t just performance (although the Range Rover SVA is available with the upgraded engine from the Range Rover Sport SVR) but also and the ability to create a product befiting of a £180,000+ price tag. SVO has attempted to do this by focusing on cabin materials quality and offering features only usually seen in long-wheelbase luxury limousines.

Advertisement - Article continues below

The final badge will be SVX, destined for upcoming Land Rover models to signify that they have been engineered to offer the most extreme off-roading capability possible, but again without compromising on-road competence. Land Rover is expected to use this badge on the new Discovery launched this year, although it has confirmed the use of SVX on future products like the new Defender expected closer towards the end of the decade.

SVO will also have a hand in the development and production of limited run specials like the Jaguar F-Type Project 7, but is adamant that future limited run models will be built in the hundreds or thousands, rather than tens.

On top of the development of these halo models, SVO also offers JLR buyers bespoke personalisation of certain models with unique interior and exterior finishes - it will build armoured versions of flagship models like the Range Rover, too. These can all be specified within the ‘Commissioning Suite’, a space within the SVO factory were potential buyers can specify their perfect Jaguar or Land Rover to whatever specification they want.

SVO's role in the future of Jaguar Land Rover

So what can we expect from SVO in the future? Well without the ability to engineer and develop engines from scratch like AMG or the M Division, SVO will have to work with what JLR can give it as a base on upcoming models, but the talent and breadth of engineering capability that the SVO division has should produce some pretty interesting variants indeed.

Development mules for upcoming high performance versions of the Jaguar F-Pace and upcoming Range Rover Velar SUVs have been spotted around the UK giving us a clue to SVO’s immediate future. Be in no doubt, JLR intends to turn SVO into a vital component of its future growth and success.

Advertisement
Advertisement

Most Popular

Visit/mercedes/18211/mercedes-amg-one-hypercar-shown-in-new-teaser-video
Mercedes

Mercedes-AMG One hypercar shown in new teaser video 

AMG’s F1-powered ultimate hypercar has been shown on track in a new clip
6 Dec 2019
Visit/ford/focus-hatchback/202030/2019-ford-focus-ecoboost-review-a-family-favourite-past-its-prime
Ford Focus Hatchback

2019 Ford Focus EcoBoost review

Some might suggest the UK is falling out of love with family hatchbacks, but the Focus EcoBoost is a good reminder of why it remains a compelling pack…
9 Dec 2019
Visit/buying-advice/19675/used-car-deals-of-the-week
used cars

Best used cars for sale this week

We’ve delved into the classifieds and chosen our favourite cars for sale this week
5 Dec 2019
Visit/features/22907/hyundai-i30-fastback-n-versus-the-col-de-turini
Hyundai i30 N hatchback

Hyundai i30 Fastback N versus the Col de Turini

We take the Hyundai i30 Fastback N up the Col de Turini, a 31km stage of the Monte Carlo World Rally Championship
19 Jul 2019