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Range Rover Evoque review- prices, specs and 0-60 time
It matters little what we think of the Range Rover Evoque, as it has already been a massive sales success for Land Rover, finding over 400,000 homes between 2011 and the end of 2014. There's no doubt it has enhanced rather than diluted the Range Rover brand and influenced the company's design direction for all models. While we suspect that most buyers are lured into the showroom by the concept car looks and the neighbour-vexing Range Rover badging, the Evoque is a polished car throughout, from its high-quality and surprisingly spacious interior to its off-road prowess. There's even a lot to like from an evo perspective, as it's genuinely great to drive and certainly makes for a satisfying car to own.
While the current Evoque is a lovely piece of kit, Land Rover has already revealed a suite of updates that make up the '2016 model year' version and it could be worth waiting for. It's expected to go on sale in August 2015 and includes the company's promising new 'Ingenium' engines, tweaks to the styling inside and out, more equipment as standard and a much-improved infotainment system. Its arrival could mean great deals on stock of the existing car too.
In spite of a diesel-dominated marketplace in the UK, Land Rover also offers the Evoque with a petrol engine, the 237bhp turbocharged 'Si4' (short inline four-cylinder) sourced from Ford. It doesn't make the most rousing of noises, but it is considerably quicker than any of the diesel Evoques and much quieter at low speeds and idle. However, it's only available with an automatic gearbox, reducing its appeal to keener drivers. On top of that, it's the only Evoque fitted with 'Active Driveline', which means it puts drive to the front wheels in normal circumstances, until the electronics reckon more traction is needed and diverts some power to the back axle. This makes for a less surefooted feel to the car in greasy conditions and takes some of the shine off it. There are plenty of more satisfying fast petrol-powered SUVs on the market.
Performance and 0-60 time > The fastest Evoque – the TD4 – hits 60mph in 8.5sec and has a top speed of 124mph. It isn’t exactly a performance car; in fact it won’t even hold its own against most warm hatches.
Engine and gearbox > The Evoque’s 2-litre turbodiesel engine has two states of tune – 148bhp and 188bhp. There’s a choice of either a manual or a nine-speed automatic gearbox.
Ride and handling > The Evoque’s direct steering plays a big part in making the driving experience engaging. Body-control is also surprisingly strong, keeping the car flat while cornering.
MPG and running costs > If fuel costs are a priority, the front-wheel-drive eD4 returns a claimed combined 57.6mpg in its five-door guise. Servicing on all models is affordable, with Land Rover’s five-year service pack costing £499.
Prices, specs and rivals > Pricing starts at £29,205 for the five-door eD4. Curiously, the new Land Rover Discovery Sport is now the Evoque’s closest rival.
Interior and tech > Standard across the entire Evoque range is a leather interior. Land Rover also offers a dual-view touchscreen infotainment system and a suite of smartphone apps.
Design > The Evoque is without doubt a stylish car, especially clad with big wheels and painted in bold colors.