Review Of The Land Rover Range Rover SUV
Fancy owning the King of the SUVs? The commanding new Land Rover Range Rover SUV costs – gulp – up to £167,000. But prices start out from as low as £77,000, and for your money you get to travel in luxury in a car that protects you like an armed bodyguard. In corners there is plenty of grip, in slippery conditions it never loses its nerve, and it comes equipped with lots of safety tech.
However, it’s up against some real gladiators in this sector. Who’s going to come out on top?
OSV takes a closer look at what it’s all about with our 2017 Land Rover Range Rover SUV review.
On The Road
As steely as a warrior, as big as a bear, the new Range Rover doesn’t look like it’d be much fun to drive. But it actually is.
Off-road, it’s incredible, while on the road it can offer supreme comfort when you just want to cruise. Its driving dynamics have been helped not least by the fact that it’s now 420kg lighter than last time. As such, you can take it onto twisting country lanes, and it won’t teeter like an elephant on ice. It will even be quite graceful.
All models handle well, but the range-topping SVAutobiography Dynamic trim is where the Range Rover really comes into its own. It makes sure you know how heavy it is, but with tweaked suspension and a lower ride height, it’s a real driver’s car.
The rest of the range is a bit less responsive. Moreover, there will be pronounced body lean in bends. However, the higher ride view is a plus. It’s also an easy car to plant on the road, and comfort is assured by a soft suspension setup.
Terrain Response technology enhances its off-road prowess. It allows the car to tackle, mud, water and snow with ease. It can also ascend and descend hills without shirking.
You’ve just gotta make sure you keep your nerve.
All engines are paired with an 8-speed automatic transmission, which is smooth and responsive. It shifts quickly when you put your foot down, too.
Speaking of the engines, the range opens up with a 3.0-litre TDV6 diesel engine. This is ideal for anyone who’s planning to put the miles in. It can do 0-62 in a sporty 7.4 seconds, and is both smooth and quiet. In fact, you’ll barely hear a murmur until you go full-pelt on the acceleration.
The hybrid combines a V8 diesel with an electric motor and can do 0-62 in 6.5 seconds. But while it’s a respectable choice that makes economic sense, power-hungry enthusiasts will prefer the savage – and more expensive – 4.40-litre SDV8 unit. It does 0-62 in the same time as the hybrid, but it has more grunt and oomph.
That said, it still makes for an awesome motorway cruiser when you’re clocking up the miles on a long journey.
A supercharged 5.0-litre V8 petrol engine sits proudly at the top of the range like a lion. It develops a staggering 534bhp, does 0-62 in 5.1 seconds, and emits a beautiful roar that will have the hairs sticking up on the end of your neck. BMW super cars, eat your heart out!
It’s an engine that’s the stuff of dreams. And although it seems faintly ridiculous that an SUV can go that fast, once you try it out you’ll be addicted.
However, it’s expensive though. If you want a petrol engine but need to be more sensible, the turbocharged 3.0-litre V8 engine is a safer bet. It does 0-62 in 7.1 seconds, but you can only get it with the Vogue SE model.
That said, the diesels are the best all-round options. They’re performative, quiet, and more economical.
Land Rover Range Rover SUV Interior, Design & Build
The Range Rover houses a near faultless interior that’s elegant, well-built and super quiet. The controls are easy to operate, and can be handled easily if you’re wearing gloves.
But while Land Rover expects buyers to be taking the car off-road for some fun in the mud, the cabin sparkles with luxury. As mentioned, barely a peep is heard from outdoors, the seats are comfortable and supportive, and the dashboard looks futuristic.
Fortunately, Land Rover has also eliminated button clutter this time around. Some of the dials and controls from last time have been dispensed with altogether, while some – such as the gear-stick that’s neatly tucked away – are hidden.
Four adults have enough space to get comfortable thanks to this being such a large car. But being so large means it’s a tad tricky to park. It’s also not so easy to shuffle down tighter streets.
You can get either a short or wheelbase model depending on the trim, and both have enormous amounts of head and legroom. You can also choose between a five-seat and four-seat model. However, if you opt for the four-seater, you can’t fold down the rear seats for more boot space.
The boot measures 909-litre with all the seats up, and a whopping 2,030 if you fold the rear bench.
Equipment & Safety Of The Land Rover Range Rover SUV
This is a very expensive car, so it figures that standard kit is excellent. The entry level model gets treated to 20” sports alloys, leather seats, heated front seats, and a 380-watt Meridian stereo.
The Vogue SE model offers cooled and heated front seats, as well as a useful power-operated boot lid.
The top two Autobiography and SVAutobiography models throw in bright xenon headlights, a glass roof, and an even better stereo.
It’s worth mentioning that the SVAutobiography is strictly a long-wheelbase model. It’s more exclusive, and gets four-zone climate control, vented and heated front massage seats, digital TV, keyless entry and a surround-view camera.
You need a car like this to be safe, so it’s reassuring that it was awarded all five stars when Euro NCAP crash tested it. It scored record ratings in both the large off-roader segment and pedestrian protection.
Costs Of The Land Rover Range Rover SUV
Prices for the new car start out from £76,800 and rise to £167,280. For more information on our leasing deals, check out our page here.
In terms of its running costs, it doesn’t fare too badly – as long as you’re not worried about this sort of thing. It’s a hefty, luxurious SUV that was never going to be cheap to run. The 3.0-litre diesel engine returns 40.9mpg at best, and emits 182g/km of CO2.
Even the hybrid model can’t claim good economy figures, returning 45.6mpg at best. Moreover, it emits 164g/km and is hard to recommend.
Pros and Cons Of The Land Rover Range Rover SUV
Engine tech has come on great strides in recent years. Even so, it’s still surprising to find an SUV that is so refined.
Top Notch Interior
The interior is exquisite and can compete with luxury limousines.
You can go on an adventure anywhere and the Range Rover will have your back. Its adjustable drive modes certainly help.
The price tag is eye-watering, and might put some buyers off.
All engines have a thirst for fuel that’s rarely satisfyingly quenched.
Land Rover Range Rover SUV vs Mercedes G Class vs Porsche Cayenne Petrol
Let’s see how it fares against its rivals in the comparison section of our 2017 Land Rover Range Rover SUV review.
Land Rover Range Rover SUV vs Mercedes G Class
The new Mercedes G-Class is far from being Mercedes’ best-looking car. Looking more like a rugged Land Rover Defender than a C-Class saloon, it boasts excellent off-road ability with stellar performance.
Who knew that a luxury brand would be so good at getting their hands dirty? As it turns out, Mercedes can muck it in with the rest of ‘em. Off-road, there are few cars more capable than the G-Class. It can quite literally go anywhere, and it won’t let you down, come wind, snow or sleet.
However, it’s on the road where you’ll run into trouble. Unresponsive steering, excess body lean and a bouncy ride are just a few of the problems you’ll be confronting.
There are just two engines available, starting with a 3.0-litre V6 diesel. This 350 model develops 245bp, and offers swift, everyday performance. However, it’s not as powerful as the high-performance V8 5.4-litre petrol engine.
This AMG model is indeed the headline choice. It delivers a whopping 571bhp, and does 0-62 in 5.4 seconds. That’s genuinely quick, and you’ll notice how much power it has straight away. It leaves a tonne of power in reserve, too.
Careful, though, as it’s an engine that’s capable of rearing its ugly monstrous head if you let it. You’ve been warned.
In terms of its running costs, the best you can hope for are deep pockets. The diesel is the most frugal, but that isn’t saying a lot as it averages 34.3mpg at best. Meanwhile, it emits 261g/km of CO2. Not exactly green-minded.
The AMG model fares much worse, returning 24.8mpg economy, and emitting a stunning 322g/km of CO2.
There are a few hints inside that Mercedes’ hands have forged this car. The leather trim is a rare touch of luxury, but goes to show that the upmarket German brand wasn’t going to let you rough it too much.
However, it’s not the most comfortable cabin. The suspension and chassis are both old which doesn’t help, while insulation is poor.
Everything is supremely well-built, though, and the car is practical. The 2,250-litre boot is gargantuan, and comes with a neat wipe clean lining feature. This will come in handy whenever your items are extra dirty. It’s a really usable boot, too, and opens side ways instead of upwards.
Land Rover – £76,800 – £167,280
Mercedes – £92,000 – £154,245
Land Rover Range Rover SUV vs Porsche Cayenne Petrol
The new Porsche Cayenne Petrol has for a while now been the most thrilling choice in this sector. It’s one of those cars which, if you can afford it, you have to do some serious soul searching if you turn it down.
Looking like the hottest SUV in town, the Cayenne thankfully makes good on its super car looks with red hot performance. It’s a 4×4, but it performs more like a sports car born for the track.
That can hardly be a bad thing, and even the entry level diesel does 0-62 in 7.3 seconds.
But we’re focusing on the more extravagant petrol engines here. The Cayenne S is the “entry level” model. It’s backed by a V6 petrol engine that develops 414bhp, and can launch you from rest to 62 in 5.5 seconds.
The Turbo model is powered by an even meatier V8 engine, which maxes out at 173mph. It scorches the earth almost as quick as the fastest SUV on the planet – the Turbo S Cayenne Petrol.
Despite all the exhilarating speed and performance on offer, it’s well worth mentioning how capable the Cayenne is off-road. It did not get as deep wading depth as the Range Rover, but it won’t let you down on rocky or slippery terrain. Hill-descent is standard, and helps to keep you composed and confident when descending slopes.
If running costs are a priority of yours, it becomes really hard to recommend a petrol Cayenne. The S model is the most frugal, but returns of 29.7mpg and emissions of 223g/km of CO2 are more on par with a supercar. The GTS model returns 28.8mpg, while the Turbo is good for 25.2mpg. All cost £140 per year in road tax.
Continuing with the sports car theme, Porsche opted for a wraparound dash for maximum driver involvement. The leather seats add to the upmarket feel, while gorgeously crafted switches and excellent build quality means we’ve gotta give this cabin 5/5.
There is plenty of scope for personalisation, too, including a neat mahogany interior trim.
On the practical front, a few things let it down such as small rear windows. It also can’t be got with an extra row of sets. On the flipside, head and legroom is excellent up front and in the back, and the rear seats are easy to slide back and forth.
The boot, meanwhile, measures 670-litres. That’s smaller than the Land Rover, and the rear seats don’t lie totally flat.
Porsche – £53,900 – £121,550
Verdict Of Our 2017 Land Rover Range Rover SUV Review
The new Range Rover is a warrior, an absolute beast of a car that’s ready to lead you into battle. Its engines emit a war cry on startup, before leading you into snow, sleet, sand and rocks without holding anything back.
And because of its upmarket image, it’s just as adept on the road.
Luxurious and handsome, but also battle worn and courageous, the Land Rover Range Rover SUV is a true King.
He believes that words can take on a transformative aspect and wants to help people make better decisions today.
His influences as a writer include Hunter S Thompson and Jack Kerouac, while among his interests outside writing are music, art, foreign films and football.
He’d one day like to own a Tesla, and still holds a candle for the Ford Capri.
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