Posts from ‘Land Rover’
This wasn’t your ordinary press preview.
First, the global launch of Land Rover’s new entry-level vehicle took place in Iceland… in January. And as one might expect of a country bordering the Arctic Circle in the middle of winter, it wasn’t exactly balmy there.
2014 Land Rover LR4 HSE Lux
Miles Driven: 159
Fuel Used: 8.0 gallons
Driving mix: 40% city, 60% highway
What’s in a name? Sight unseen, would you be more likely to let Thurston Howell III borrow your comb, or some guy that goes by Gilligan? Would your sandwich taste better as croquet monsieur et gruyere, or as a ham and cheese?
2014 Land Rover Range Rover Sport HSE
Dates tested: 1/13/2014-1/20/2014
Miles driven: 396
Fuel used: 11.8 gallons
Real-world fuel economy: 15.8 mpg
Land Rover has long held a rather oxymoronic position in the SUV market: that of an exceptionally capable and rugged off-road machine with the trimmings and performance of a luxury sedan.
By Don Sikora II
I learned to drive in a 1977 AMC Hornet. It was a very basic car, and one of the few options it had was an automatic transmission. Like almost every automatic at the time it was a three-speed unit, basically American Motors’ version of Chrysler’s highly respected TorqueFlite automatic. That was back in the mid Eighties.
Land Rover is a bit of a dichotomy. On the one hand, the name is virtually synonymous the world over with rugged off-road ability. On the other, it’s recognized as a luxury marque, at least in the U.S. Those may seem to be conflicting attributes, but the company—and its products—pull off the combination.
Although the classic Range Rover is probably what pops to mind when the Land Rover name is mentioned, as with many luxury makes, the company has lower-priced models intended to appeal to a wider demographic audience. In this case, they include the compact LR2, midsize LR4, and stylish Range Rover Evoque, introduced last year.
Some might be surprised to find that the entry-level Land Rover LR2 starts at well under $40,000, a price not far north of a comparably equipped “regular” compact SUV. That includes a lengthy list of standard equipment, which grows even longer for 2013.
Also new for the model year are some cosmetic changes that include restyled headlights, grille, taillights, and wheels. Inside, materials have been upgraded, the gauge cluster has been revamped, and the central control panel features a new 7-inch touchscreen. Newly available features include an 825-watt, 17-speaker Meridian surround-sound audio system, the “Say What You See” voice command system, and a rearview camera with “Hitch Assist,” which comes into play when hitching up a trailer.
Jaguar took the wraps off its most powerful sedan ever at the 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show.
The 2014 Jaguar XFR-S boasts a 550-horsepower 5.0-liter supercharged V8 engine and an 8-speed automatic transmission. The British maker says the car will go from 0-60 mph in 4.4 seconds and achieve an electronically limited top speed of 186 mph.
Engineers tightened the front and rear suspensions by 30 percent. A new rear subframe is necessary to handle the high levels of torque running to the rear wheels. Jaguar’s Adaptive Dynamics system monitors and counteracts body lean, which is especially useful when carving tight corners. Large ventilated disc brakes bring things to a halt.
Also on display at the 2012 LA Auto Show was the 2014 Jaguar F-Type. Originally unveiled at the Paris Motor Show, the F-Type is a 2-seat convertible powered by either a supercharged V6 or V8 engine.
Land Rover is also a part of the Jaguar family, and the purveyor of high-end off-roaders showed its redesigned 2013 Range Rover. Billed as the first all-aluminum SUV, the new “Rangie” weighs some 500 pounds less than its predecessor. This should translate into much improved fuel economy—up to 5 mpg in both the city and on the highway.
Note: This report supplements Consumer Guide Automotive’s full report on the 2012 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque, a premium-compact SUV that starts at $41,145.
Test car came equipped with: Dynamic Premium Package, continuously variable shock absorbers, Climate Comfort Package, special paint, contrasting black roof, satellite/HD radio, and 20-inch chromed alloy wheels. Total MSRP including California emissions equipment and $850 destination charge = $60,095. (Note: This vehicle sees no significant changes for 2013).
Powertrain: 2.0-liter 240-horsepower turbocharged 4-cylinder engine, 6-speed automatic transmission, all-wheel drive.
Acceleration: Our friends at Car and Driver timed a top-line Prestige 4-door at 6.9 seconds 0-60 mph, which seems a shade optimistic. They also report top-gear incremental clockings of 3.7 seconds for 30-50 mph and 4.9 seconds for 50-70 mph, quite good for a two-ton SUV with 240 horses. Overall then, the Evoque has enough suds for most situations—at least with just a driver aboard. A sizeable load is sure to slow it somewhat. I agree with my colleagues that the 6-speed auto trans is responsive and, yes, occasionally “busy,” but I didn’t experience any abrupt or ragged shift action.
Land Rover has just revealed a single teaser photo of the 2013 Range Rover. The company’s flagship SUV is not just redesigned but “improved,” “enhanced,” and “transformed,” according to the press literature.
The new Range Rover is a stunning 925 pounds lighter due to a new all-aluminum monocoque body structure. That, of course, will translate into better fuel economy. According to Land Rover, the new vehicle is “the most capable and most luxurious Land Rover yet.” It offers “new levels of refinement,” “improve[d] peerless ride quality,” “transformed handling and agility,” and “enhanced all-terrain performance.”
This new dream machine goes on sale in September 2012, with customer deliveries scheduled to begin in early 2013. There’s no word yet on pricing. The 2012 Range Rover starts at $ 79,425.