Rover Evoque SD4 Dynamic 4WD
Range Rover Evoques have
already been pre-sold. Great news for
Great Britain as, after all the razzle-
dazzle, the stylish new Range Rover
five-door Evoque and three-door
Evoque Coupe models are finally
ready for delivery...
ADVANCE ORDERS in the UK alone number around 10,000. And all before
the first Evoque has been delivered to the first customer. Prices reflect the
Range Rover name: they start from £27,955 and top-out at £39,995.
These may be recessionary times but that hasn't put customers off. Interestingly,
about a third of these 'early adopters' are women likely to be
high profile singles, ladies who lunch (and shop!), yummy mummies, and empty-nesters
chauffeured by their partners.
Beneath the fashionable and glitzy metal skin, Evoque models are loosely based
on Land Rover's family workhorse, the Freelander. What they have in common is
that both are SUVs most Evoque models are expected to be 4x4s.
However, less taxing (129-133g/km of CO2) 2WD diesel-driven Evoque variants
are expected early in 2012.
can get a taste of the public 'image' created for the Evoque from the fact that
Victoria Beckham has 'consulted' on some 'posh 'n' spicy' interior treatments
so watch out for a 'VB' special edition sometime soon… Tellingly,
one of the many 'red carpet' launches for the new Evoque took place at Harvey
Nichols, where celebs, WAGs and the wealthy welcomed the latest Chelsea tractor
aside, be assured that all that glitters at least in regards to
the Evoque's performance is most certainly not fool's gold. In
truth, the Evoque is something of a gem.
The Evoques very
modern exterior styling,
its plush but compact
and very comprehensive
level of equipment
gives this baby Range
Rover all the ownership
appeal of the larger
Range Rover and Range
For a start, it uses more or less the same platform as the highly-capable Land
Rover Freelander along with the same All Terrain Response system (for 4WD versions).
Furthermore, power comes from a significantly revised version of the 2.2-litre
turbodiesel unit (60% of components have been changed) or, for those with a
liking for unleaded, a turboed 2.0-litre Ford petrol engine.
The Evoque's rear seat legroom and boot space suffers (for the record, boot/load
space is 575 to 1,445 litres) as it has a marginally shorter wheelbase than
the Freelander, but there again it's a smidgen wider; it also has shorter front
and rear overhangs, making its 4,365mm length easier for Sloane
Street parking. More importantly, it's also the lightest-ever Land Rover
The majority of Evoque buyers will order one of the four-cylinder 2.2-litre
turbodiesel engines (available in 147 or 187bhp tune); most will also go for
a 4WD set-up. Currently, the less practical but racier-looking three-door Evoque
Coupe is selling as well as the more user-friendly five-door.
Trim levels are Pure, Prestige and Dynamic with, to date, most buyers choosing
the top spec and then adding even more items from the comprehensive, extra-cost
goodies list; for instance, the £450 panoramic glass roof, already specified
by 80% of customers.
Driven on the streets of Edinburgh, along Scotland's testing country roads and
lanes and with some off-roading in the Glens of the Scottish Borders, the Evoques
(3- and 5-door versions) proved to be very capable, well balanced, comfortable
drove the most likely best-selling Evoque, the 187bhp 2.2-litre SD4 turbodiesel
unit with the six-speed manual gearbox and Dynamic specification
it costs £37,380. I also tried the Evoque SD4 Coupe with the same engine and
same trim level but with the £1,610, six-speed auto 'box that costs a hefty
the manual and the automatic returned exactly 30.1mpg a figure
significantly down on the official figures of 50.2mpg for the five-door Evoque
and 44.3mpg for the Coupe. CO2 emissions for these drivetrains are 149g/km (manual)
and 169g/km (auto) so road tax will be £130 for the manual but
£265 in the First Year and then £190 per annum for the auto.
that it will make a lot of difference to a customer about to spend £40K, but
manual models do have a distinct financial edge; however, the auto is nicer
to drive. User-choosers will pay a minimum of 22% Benefit-in-Kind company car
Plush they may be,
but the Evoques are no
softies when it comes
to tough going. With
permanent 4WD and All
available for bad driving
conditions both on
and off-road, plus
Descent Control for
off-roading, they are just
as capable and sure-
footed as the workhorse
Plush they may be, but the Evoques are no softies when it comes to tough going.
With permanent all-wheel drive and All Terrain Response available for bad driving
conditions both on and off-road, plus Descent Control for off-roading, they
are just as capable and sure-footed as the workhorse Freelander.
Of course, most Evoque owners are unlikely to venture too far off the tarmac.
The worst most Evoques will encounter will be long, winding gravel driveways
and city shopping or luncheon trips.
However, the Evoque's ability to cope with severe weather conditions under all
circumstances will be comforting even if nothing more alarming is required than
trudging through deep snow to the ski slopes.
Land Rover has paid significant attention to making the engines more refined
the usual high noise intrusion of diesel engines has been drastically
reduced by the addition of extra soundproofing in the engine bay. In fact, it's
now so quiet that the wind noise from the very large door mirrors was far more
Both of the test models I drove were fitted with 19-inch alloy wheels
these are the best and most comfortable size to go for as anything larger tends
to unsettle the ride. That noted, style-conscious drivers seem to believe that
bigger-is-best and for them 20-inch wheels will doubtless be mandatory.
Evoque's 'sharp' and very modern exterior styling, its plush but compact five-seater
interior and its very comprehensive levels of equipment (far too much to list
here) gives this 'baby' Range Rover all the ownership appeal of the larger Range
Rover and Range Rover Sport. Expect the Evoque's styling to become the 'new
vision' for the next generation of Range Rovers.
Against? Snug inside but with limited rear seat leg and head room, smallish
boot space, wind noise intrusion, and expensive. For? Lots: startling good looks;
image, sumptuous interior; strong and quiet engine; compact and easy to park;
comfortable ride on 19-inch wheels; and a number of all-terrain technologies
at your fingertips. And it's built in Britain! David Miles
Rover Evoque SD4 Dynamic 4WD | £37,380
Maximum speed: 124mph | 0-62mph: 10 seconds | Overall test MPG: 30.1mpg
Power: 187bhp | Torque: 310lb
ft | CO2 149g/km