The Lagonda legend lives on! Contrary to reports that Aston Martin’s reborn Lagonda project had been shelved, the maker has confirmed that plans to resurrect the luxury brand are only on hold.
Despite the cool reception to its SUV concept, which debuted at 2009’s Geneva Motor Show, an Aston spokesman revealed the name will return. “It has always been in our long-term plans, just not an immediate action,” he said. “We’ve never cancelled Lagonda; merely put it on hold.”
The spokesman added that
a new car is unlikely to be
seen until 2012 at the earliest.
Part of the delay is Aston’s need to team up with a major manufacturer to supply a platform and a new range of engines.
The original concept was based on a Mercedes GL, and a deal with the German firm seems the most likely option, especially if Aston agrees to build a new range of Maybach models at its Gaydon plant in Warks in return. The first Lagonda is highly
likely to be an SUV, albeit
less controversially styled than the previous concept. Aston Martin currently sells cars in
35 countries, but a high-riding Lagonda, priced at between £100,000 and £130,000, would be perfectly placed to take advantage of booming markets
in Russia, China and India,
where road infrastructure hasn’t caught up with expanding wealth.
Aston Martin boss Dr Ulrich Bez said: “I believe we can be present in more than 100 countries in the world.” The
new car would help achieve that aim, going head-to-head with
the Porsche Cayenne, top-spec Range Rovers and a forthcoming luxury crossover from Bentley.
Using the Lagonda badge would distinguish the model from Aston’s range of sports cars and its Cygnet city car (see panel, opposite), and resurrect a brand name that is now 102 years old.
After the SUV, a large four-door, four-seat saloon is expected in around 2014.
This could use a version of
the next S-Class’s platform, pending a deal with Mercedes.