Don’t be fooled: Although the new Range Rover Evoque hatchback might look very similar to its predecessor, a lot has changed underneath the skin so that this rugged beauty is now a very different, very mightier proposition. Efficiency is much better, an exciting new fleet of diesel units have been introduction, and equipment is improved. As such, this SUV hatch continues to set all the important precedents in its sector.
Naturally, its rivals were waiting for Land Rover to trip and stumble because surely the Evoque couldn’t keep being this good. But are the changes that have been implemented enough to keep the buyers happy? Let’s take a closer look with our review.
Range Rover Evoque Test Drive
A lot has changed at Land Rover in recent years. The Discovery Sport has all but replaced the ageing Freelander, but perhaps the biggest changes have come with the engines – namely the production of the Ingenium units that have improved emissions dramatically. As such, Land Rover is now on par with the Japanese and Germans when it comes to running costs.
The new Range Rover Evoque benefits from the shiny new aluminium Ingenium diesel unit. It’s a lightweight TD4 plant that weighs a lot less than its predecessor, and it pleasingly offers much less noise and vibration, too. Buyers can get it in either 150PS or 180PS guises, with the former coming with a front-wheel drive system and the latter coming with 4WD.
But as good as the diesel units are, they can’t compete with the Si4 2.0-litre petrol when it comes to speed. This 240PS bad boy can get from rest to 62mph in 7.6 seconds before maxing out at 135mph. It comes wedded to a 9-speed ZF gearbox, but although this transmission is optional we suggest you take up the offer if you really want to get the best out of the new Evoque. Indeed, ZF themselves claim that it is “below the threshold of perception,” because it can swap between gears so rapidly
Driving style is good, and is aided by an adaptive shift program. There is also a Torque Vectoring by Braking system on offer which helps to improve agility. Off-road ability, meanwhile, is boosted by All-Terrain Progress Control, a neat feature that ensures your vehicle keeps up a pre-determined speed in reverse of forward transmission between 19 and 1.1mph. This is particularly useful for when you’re plundering through difficult terrain.
The Interior, Design & Build Of The New Range Rover Evoque
The problem Land Rover surely faced when they were developing the new Evoque was how to perfectly bring out a dash of modernity in a car many people already know and love for its inherent, rugged appeal. In 2016, it’s wider and lower than last time around, and subtle exterior tweaks include slim-lined LED fog lamps, well as two modified grille designs. You can get your hands on full LED headlights if you want (optional), while the bonnet vents that were once only available with the 3-door variants are now also available with the 5-door Autobiography and HSE Dynamic models.
A few changes have been made inside, and they’re all fairly pleasing. Land Rover have now introduced more soft-touch materials that add quality and class to the proceedings, while the seats have been updated so that they offer more adjustability and therefore more comfort. The instrument binnacle benefits from changes, too. So while the Range Rover Evoque hatch is the cheapest in the line-up, it doesn’t actually feel that way. Leather and metal abound, while cleve tech ensures it feels slickly contemporary.
The biggest difference between the 3-door and 5-door models lies in how much room you get. If you opt for the latter, you and your passengers benefits from 30mm more headroom, and you also get 25-litres more space in the boot, which means there is a total of 575-litres with the rear seats folded down.
Range Rover Evoque Price And Running Cost
Prices for the new Evoque hatchback start out from around £31,000 and rise to £52,000. Even if you opt for the baseline SE variant, you’ll still get a good amount of standard equipment, including heated leather seats, 18” alloys, parking sensors, cruise control, and lane-departure warning. Opt for the HSY Dynamic trim, and you get 20” alloys and a premium sat nav. The range-topping Autobiography trim, meanwhile, chucks in a full leather interior, Wi-Fi and customised 20” alloys.
In terms of running costs, Land Rover knew things had to improve from last time around. A lot of money has been invested in the new all-aluminium diesel, and the numbers are promising: 68mpg and 109g/km of CO2. Even if you plump for the mightier 180PS plant, you’ll still be returning 59mpg while emitting a respectable 125g/km of CO2. If you fancy the 240PS petrol, the numbers are 36mpg and 181g/km of CO2.
Our Favourite: Range Rover Evoque Autobiography
The exterior and the interior largely just needed tidying up a bit, whereas the engine range needed something new, something different – something more efficient. As such, this is where most of Land Rover’s budget has gone this time around – and it’s money wisely spent.
The Ingenium engine family is pointing towards the future, and perhaps the most depressing thing for this car’s rivals is that this is just the start. The Range Rover Evoque hatchback has always been devastatingly good on the road and in the cabin, but now it’s matching up in terms of efficiency. Substance and style – you can’t beat it! And if you’ve got the cash, the Range Rover Evoque Autobiography is damn near irresistible.
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