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Car Review: Range Rover Velar

Elegant in its simplicity!

Every now and again a car is launched and you find yourself lost for words. This is one such car. When the Range Rover Velar was first revealed to the world back in March, social media channels went in to overdrive. But seeing it in the metal can almost take your breath away. It is just glorious!

Range Rover Velar

This is the fourth member of the Range Rover family and sits smack-bang in between the Evoque and Range Rover Sport. But it is neither a smaller version of one or a bigger version of the other, it is its own unique character.  It’s a new type of Range Rover for a new type of customer. It is a luxury SUV which takes luxury to new heights.

Let’s start with the design, the thing that will get heads turning on the road. Land Rover had a blank canvass to start with but the floating roof and clamshell bonnet provide clear references to its lineage. It is elegant in its simplicity and its silhouette is just stunning!

Range Rover Velar

Just when you think that it cannot get any better, you open the door (with the deployable handles) and step inside. Breath! Taken! Away! The elegant simplicity carries through in to the cabin and the first thing to catch your eye are the two high-definition 10-inch touchscreens of the new Touch Pro Duo infotainment system. They follow the subtle curvature of the instrument panel and it just looks like nothing you have seen before. It eliminates the traditional dial and hard buttons, creating extra space in the centre console.

Range Rover Velar

If that is not enough, you also have twin-analogue dials with a 5-inch TFT display between them in front of the driver, or as standard from SE specification and above, a 12,3-inch Interactive Driver Display.

Range Rover Velar

The quality of the materials and the attention to detail stands out, if you are going to be spending a lot of time in car, this is the cabin you want to be in. I have one criticism and it is only because I am nit picking and feel there has to be a flaw in this car, surely? It is the stitching on the steering wheel. It could have been more discreet, softer to the touch and slimmer. But if I am very honest with myself, after about 30 minutes of driving, I stopped noticing it. So there goes that flaw, out the window! Even the engine, road and wind noise is almost non-existent. This cabin is, as the press release puts it, a “calm sanctuary.”

There is more than enough space up front and in the rear, the cushioning of the seats is comfy and there’s is plenty of storage space. Even the boot is generously spaced with 637-litres.

There are six engines on offer, namely three petrol and three diesel options. The Velar range kicks off with a 2,0-litre turbodiesel engine with 132 kW (the D180) and a claimed fuel consumption of 5,4L/100 km. The range tops off with the supercharged 3,0 V6 petrol engine (P380) which 280 KW of power. But my choice would be the twin-turbocharged 3,0-litre V6 diesel engine with its 221 kW and a claimed fuel consumption of 6,4l/100 km.

This engine is refined and has that pull you can only get from a diesel, the 700 N.m of torque certainly makes acceleration effortless. And it doesn’t have that intrusive diesel grumble.

Range Rover Velar

Staying true to the Range Rover brand, the Velar is capable off-road. It sports Land Rover’s Terrain Response System which allows you to adjust vehicle settings to suit the terrain. It also has a host of other systems depending on which trimline you choose. You should be good on some tricky gravel, but this car is just too pretty to go bundu bashing in. And with the amount of customisation on offer, this car is likely to be an extension of your personality. This car is offered with the most personalisation of any car Land Rover has offered.

There is no doubt that this Velar has dramatically changed the game, not only for Range Rover, but for the segment as well. Land Rover has raised a very high bar and competitors such as the Porsche Macan and BMW X4 need to be worried. It is a world class package with a world class design and world class cabin.

Pricing starts at R947 700 for the base model and goes up to R1 324 100 for the P380 HSE model.

You can order your Range Rover Velar now.

 

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