Plenty of SUVs have tethered the line between both extremes and everything else in between over the past decade, but in the realms of compact luxury SUV, the Range Rover Evoque has the winning formula. After all, its first generation sold more than 800,000 units to become the firm’s best-selling vehicle.
This year, Range Rover builds on the Evoque’s sophisticated, sporty character to create its second generation, and while it looks only slightly updated, is actually all-new both inside and out.
The British marque knew better than to ruin their golden child with over-the-top lines. Here, an evolutionary approach was taken instead, incorporating styling cues such as slimmer LED lights from its larger Velar sibling for a modern update. The car’s bold, angular styling is still met with familiar details such as the clamshell hood, tapered roof, and narrowing side glass, but the front and rear overhangs are slightly shorter, giving the hulking ride a more purposeful stance.
It might be the smallest SUV in Land Rover’s lineup, but that hasn’t stopped the new Evoque from growing. It’s noticeably bigger in every dimension, which translates to a little more legroom for rear passengers and 10 percent more boot space — good news here for those who either travel with big suitcases or big family members.
Two variants will be offered at launch locally. The more premium First Edition 2.0 comes rendered in your choice of exclusive metallic paint finishes, and comes equipped with a 247hp 2.0-litre turbo, while giving more push at 365Nm. Off the line, this sleek ride manages 100kph in 7.5 seconds before climbing to its top speed of 230kph.
The R-Dynamic SE 2.0, on the other hand, manages 197hp and 320Nm, and does the same sprint in 8.5 seconds before maxing out at 216kph.
One of the best updates, however is the mild-hybrid power system that’ll be mated to both all-wheel-drive SUVs. The 48-volt mild-hybrid system harvests energy lost during deceleration and stores it within a battery, kicking in only at speeds below 17kph when the engine shuts off to minimise emission. It’s a pretty nifty trick which will prove useful in city driving conditions and —while not quite as clean as say, a Tesla — still goes a long way in making a difference to the environment and your wallet.
Inside is where Range Rover really let its instincts for refinement loose. The interiors are suitably decked out in equally sustainable materials, from Eucalyptus textile to Kvadrat wool blends, although leather is still part of the deal. The new Touch Pro Duo infotainment system is also now integrated within, with two 10-inch touchscreens in high-definition that make features such as adaptive cruise control and off-roading modes a cinch.
Other notable technology mentions within the 2020 Range Rover Evoque also include the ClearSight Rear View Mirror — which transforms into a HD video screen with footage from the rear — and ClearSight Ground View, which sees cameras on the front grille and door mirrors that highlight what’s ahead and underneath the vehicle whenever necessary.