Ride and handling
The lightest Range Rover, the TDV6, is still comfortably into two-tonne territory, while a long wheelbase SDV8 is a few kilograms short of 2.5 tonnes. Add some luxury options and that weight only goes one way, too. All of which makes the way the Range Rover handles even more impressive. For such a big, tall and weighty machine the Range Rover has the fleet of foot of a balletic front-row forward. That agility is helped by the standard fitment of electronically controlled and cross-linked air suspension with automatic self-levelling, while Land Rover’s Adaptive Dynamics helps reduce body roll in the bends by monitoring vehicle movements 500 times a second.
That air suspension provides a beautifully composed and controlled ride - with a few exceptions - as only sharper ridges upset its otherwise fine quality. The electric power assisted steering has convincing weighting too and while there’s nothing in the way of real feel the Range Rover can be placed with genuine confidence. Push it too hard and you’ll feel the subtle effect of the numerous stability and control systems in operation, though keep it sensible and the Range Rover’s dynamism is fairly extraordinary. SDV8 and 5.0 V8 S/C models gain Dynamic Response to further improve the Range Rover’s agility.
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All that allows the Range Rover to provide a drive that, despite its famed ‘command’ driving position, is able to rival its luxury saloon competition on the road. Inevitably it’ll give up to its mass before an S-Class or 7 Series in extreme situations, but in the real world the Range Rover competes on a level playing field - and demolishes such rivals on ploughed fields…