Media reviews for the 2013 Range Rover have been going on in Morocco this week, so we have a round-up and video.
The first review drives of the new Range Rover have been going on in Morocco this week, and the praise for Land Rover’s new flagship have been pretty much universal.
Sadly, Cars UK didn’t get an invite, but that’s not going to stop us doing our own ‘review’ of what the lucky ones who did attend thought of the Range Rover. And we’ve also got hold of Land Rover’s B-Roll footage from the tests – designed to be chopped up and voiced-over for individual video reviews of the new Range Rover – so we’ve put that at the bottom for you to flick through.
With three versions of the new Range Rover on offer – and three trim versions; Vogue, Vogue SE and Autobiography (UK) – there’s a new Range Rover to suit budgets from £70k to £100k.
The new entry-level Range Rover comes with Land Rover’s 3.0 litre diesel yet, thanks to the weight loss of up to 420kg, manages to offer performance (7.9 seconds to 62mph) similar to the old Range Rover’s 4.4 litre V8 diesel and economy of 37.7 mpg from its 255bhp and 442lb/ft of torque.
The general consensus is that the 3.0 TDV6 is the new Range Rover that’s most like the old Range Rover, mainly because it offers similar performance but comes without Land Rover’s Dynamic Response system (although it does get Adaptive Damping) so it rolls a bit more than the more powerful new Range Rovers.
But the 3.0 TDV6 seems a much more able Range Rover than the last model, especially with decent performance – combined with the improvement in accommodation and handling – conspiring to deliver an even more appealing car than before yet offering official economy of pushing on 40mpg (although real world will be 30mpg).
Probably the pick of the new Range Rovers – unless you happen to have a bottomless bank account and don’t care about range – is the 4.4 litre V8 Diesel that now offers 334bhp and 516lb/ft of torque, with an official consumption of 32.5 mpg (last model RR 4.4 SDV8 did 30.1mpg), which probably means real world economy of 25mpg (as we discovered when we reviewed the Range Rover 4.4 V8 Autobiography a couple of years ago).
But the new 4.4 litre diesel Range Rover is a much more able car. It now gets to 62mph in 6.9 seconds and its 8-speed ‘box means it’s never really working hard even when you push on. And push on you can thanks to Land Rover’s Adaptive Damping and Dynamic Response keeping the new Range Rover much flatter and more responsive to inputs than before.
That makes for a Range Rover that offers more accommodation, an even nicer interior, better performance and, thanks to the latest Terrain Response system (now automatic – although you can over-ride it) offering greater wading depth, better off-road too.
But you do pay for the privilege with the starting price for the V8 Diesel at £78k for the Vogue rising to £95k for the Autobiography – and that’s before you start picking options from Land Rover’s extensive options for the RR.
Throw caution to the wind – and care not a jot about the cost of fuel or the likely range of less than 300 miles – and you can have the range-topping new Range Rover – the 5.0 litre Supercharged V8 – which will set you back £98k plus options as it only comes in Autobiography trim.
For your £98k the new Range Rover 5.0 V8 S/C does, however, give you scintillating performance of 0-62mph in 5.4 seconds from its 503bhp V8 with 461lb/ft of torque, and economy that has improved to 20.5 mpg (although more like 15mpg is a real world average).
The old S/C RR was an almost surreal experience as it hurtled towards the horizon like an ancient monument on four wheels, and the new RR S/C just exaggerates that perception. But the new Range Rover is so much more stable and dynamic it seems you can hustle round the twisty stuff in a most un-Range Rover like way with a delicacy and preciseness never experienced before in a Range Rover.
Wrap that impressive performance and handling up with the imperiousness the Range Rover offers, the even more luxurious cabin, more room and (slightly) better economy, and you have to question why anyone would buy a luxury saloon.
There were a few dissenting voices from the media reviews (mainly those who thought the Range Rover was still a profligate monster) but there seems little doubt the new Range Rover has taken all things RR to a completely new level.
It’s hoped that a ground-up fresh start with the new Range Rover means that the previous reliability glitches – many of which could be sourced to the way the old Range Rover had its systems added as it evolved – have been banished for good, and that the new Range Rover will not just be incredibly impressive, but reliable too.
If its is, and only time will tell, Land Rover’s ambition of selling more than 40,000 new Range Rovers round the world every year will be a breeze.