Ok, the wait is over - the 2013 Range Rover has been revealed.
I have to say, I’m quite shocked at the changes Land Rover made. It’s certainly more modern, however I do have a feeling traditional buyers could be put off by the loss of majesty over the current model. It certainly brings the Range Rover into the current decade, just as the third-generation model did 10 years ago. You can see a lot of the Evoque influencing the design, especially the wheels.
Apart from the chintzy grille, the front is a damn good interpretation of a modern Range. I love it. It’s certainly kept its imposing stance. The side however is where things start to go wrong for me. My main criticism of this new Range is the front door. What the hell where the thinking integrating those gills on there?!? It just looks plain tacky. Down the back the tail lights grab your eye like a fluorescent thong, I find them incredibly good looking. A bit wild, yet somehow suits this younger, modern Range Rover. The rear windscreen looks like its belongs on the Sport though.
While I’m at it I’ll admit that they have slightly brought the Range Rover more towards the suburbs rather than the country estate. Which is a shame because I’ve always preferred seeing a Range Rover parked outside a stately country house than on a driveway of a suburban house or in the basement parking of a high rise condominium.
The interior certainly has a lot of Evoque influences as well, chief among which is the display screen on the centre console. Personally I think it was a mistake brining the screen lower down because it doesn’t give the impression that the interior is as big and towering as it was before. And to me, a Range Rover is as much about big and towering as it is luxury and sophistication. The Range Rover also retains the TFT screen instrument panel and the rotating gear-knob to give the interior are clean and simple look. For the first time customers will also have the option to have a captain chair setup in the rear. Obviously, being a Range Rover the materials used throughout the interior will be of high quality.
And like the interior, the exterior also uses state of the art tech. The main headline of this new Range is that it weighs an astonishing 420kgs less than the model it replaces. To out that into perspective for a Gallardo to be called a ‘Superleggera’ it lost 100kgs. The new Mercedes SL shed 140kgs and that got everyone talking. Imagine how much 420kgs would affect the Range Rover! Land Rover claims that the 39% drop in weight has resulted in massive improvements for fuel economy, agility and performance.
It’s all down to an all-aluminium monoque body/chassis technology borrowed from Jaguar. This is the first of its kind for any SUV. It’s no surprise then, that Land Rover plans to apply this to most of its high-end SUVs in the near future. So that’s the Range Rover Sport then.
Powering this Superleggera RS Range Rover will be the same engines in the current model, with a few tweaks here and there. They’ll all send their power to all fours via an 8-speed ZF auto. Presumably the same as the current gen as well. There’s also a new Terrain Response 2 which can now ‘read’ road surfaces and configures the car accordingly to suit conditions. Clever stuff.
It’ll be officially launched at the Paris Motor Show next month and prices are expected to range from £70,000 all the way to £120,000. It’s certainly a lot of money but it’s certainly a lot of car. I’m pleased that Land Rover restrained themselves, I feel like they could’ve made it more chintzy and vulgar than it is. And as for naysayers out there, Land Rover needed to to do this. In order for the Range Rover to continue it has to keep up with the times and it’s contemporary rivals. The design is certainly one that’ll grow on you. But with that said, overall I’m a fan of where Land Rover brought the Range Rover. Then again I’ll always be a fan of the Range Rover.
Now if you’ll excuse me I’m off to buy some lottery tickets.