In 2008, Land Rover began testing Freelander with diesel-electric hybrid technology. With a diesel engine powering the front wheels, it has an electric rear axle drive (ERAD) to power the rear wheels.
The electric motor is powered by a lithium ion battery and it can use either power individually or together as necessary. Thus the Freelander ERAD could use more electric power in urban areas, or both technologies to give the necessary power for difficult terrain.
The ERAD vehicles were developed with the UK's Energy Saving Trust and two cars were demonstrated and tested during 2008. Whilst not available for sale to the public, some of the technology provided valuable data for future LR products.