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Range Rover (L405, 2012-2021) review - interior and tech

The modern Range Rover continues to define the luxury SUV just as its ancestors did, and despite strong rivals is still something special

Evo rating
  • Still has that intangible air of invincibility; still has unmatched off-road ability; now has a greater spread of capability
  • Reliability still problematic; isn’t as good on road as rivals; starting to feel a little dated

The fundamental interior of the Range Rover hasn’t changed in nearly seven years on sale, so it’s not surprising to note that compared to newer rivals and, indeed models within the JLR range, it’s starting to look a tad dated. But it’s not quite as dire as you might think, as there are one or two elements that keep the current Range Rover’s interior as stately and luxurious as it’s ever been.

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One of those elements is the material use; all models except the basic Vogue utilise soft, smelly, waxy semi-aniline leather that gives a definite air of luxury compared to merely premium rivals. The difference is the soft matt-finish leather surface, one that’s similar to that used on expensive Italian sofas and leather goods. It’s offset by a selection of real timber veneers in matt or gloss finishes, as well as controls and touchpoints that do a pretty good job of feeling like metal, even if they’re not.

The other element that keeps the interior fresh is the substantial technological upgrade the Range Rover picked up in 2017. Replacing the previous low-res central screen and driver display is Land Rover’s Touch Pro Duo system, which features slicker graphics and clever rotary dials integrated into a secondary lower screen as found on the Velar and new Evoque. The interfaces and graphics aren’t as slick as in the new Defender, but they’re no longer the obvious oversight they once were.

But more than leather, timber or tech, the real draw to a Range Rover’s interior is its aspect to the outside world. The high seating position, low scuttle and general feeling of lording it over the common man has been a backbone of the Range Rover’s popularity for 50 years, and nothing’s changed. Driving a Range Rover really is like nothing else, and so much more imperious than rivals from Bentley, Porsche or Maserati. The fact the Queen still drives one also helps reinforce that feeling.

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