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Range Rover lifts veil on Velar. Image by Land Rover.

Range Rover lifts veil on Velar
Uncovering all the details, prices and specifications of the glamorous new Range Rover Velar.
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2017-08-30: First Drive: Range Rover Velar

What's all this about?

It's been hinted at, we've had teaser shots, now here's the full rundown - it's the Range Rover Velar and it's coming to a showroom near you this summer, with prices booting off from £44,830. It will be stuffed with luxury kit and loads of safety gear, as you'd expect of a premium product from a desirable brand, but let's focus on the prices, engines and range structure of the newbie.

OK. Talk cash first, will you?

Designed to fit in the 'white space' between the Evoque and Sport in Range Rover's line-up, that near-45 grand starting price lands you in a 2.0-litre diesel with no trim grade name, so it's just the Velar. The vast majority of the 26 different configurations you'll be able to select from at launch fall in the £50-60,000 bracket, but there are one or two cars the wrong side of £64,000... and, indeed, £70,000... oh, and then two at more than £80,000, which rather steps on the toes of the Sport and 'full-fat' Range Rover models that already exist.

It does indeed. What engines are offered?

Two Ingenium diesels, two V6s that are familiar from the (whisper it) Jaguar F-Pace line-up (which is surely the car the Velar is most clearly targeted at), and then two four-cylinder turbocharged petrol options. These are interesting.

How so?

Because they are also Ingenium units, the all-new petrol motors announced by Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) late last year. These are in-house developed and built, meaning the arrangement JLR has with Ford for sourcing turbocharged petrol engines is coming to an end. So, overall, what we have powering the Velar are drivetrains listed as D180, D240, D300, P250, P300 and P380. This makes for a very simple-to-understand hierarchy: D or P for what fuel they use, then their output in horsepower.

Really? Is it that easy to comprehend?

Yup. The 2.0-litre, four-cylinder Ingenium diesel in the D180 and D240 models comes with either one or two turbochargers, accordingly. The D180 has 180hp, 430Nm, can do 0-62mph in 8.9 seconds and run on to 130mph, while returning 52.5mpg and 142g/km CO2 in the process. The D240 ups the power and torque (240hp and 500Nm) for 0-62mph in 7.8 seconds and a 135mph top speed, with slightly less impressive eco-stats - 48.7mpg and 154g/km.

And how about those Ingenium petrols?

The P300, with 300hp and 400Nm, will not be available at launch, following on later in 2017 from the five initial units - but when it does arrive, it will take the mantle as the most powerful four-cylinder engine ever used in a Land Rover product. For now, though, that leaves us with the 250hp/365Nm P250, also rated at 2.0 litres in capacity, which can do 0-62mph in 6.7 seconds, go on to a 135mph top speed, and return 37.2mpg with 173g/km of CO2 emissions.

I believe you mentioned V6s earlier?

Oh yes. The D300 is the 3.0-litre twin-turbo V6 diesel with 300hp and 700Nm. Expect 0-62mph in 6.5 seconds, a 150mph top whack, 44.1mpg and 167g/km CO2. The P380 is the familiar supercharged V6 3.0-litre petrol that's seen service in a lot of fast Jags, and it delivers 380hp, 450Nm, 0-62mph in 5.7 seconds and a 155mph limited top speed. Fuel economy stands at 30.1mpg and CO2 emissions are 214g/km.

What else have we got on the mechanicals front?

All models will be four-wheel drive and fitted with an eight-speed ZF automatic, while the V6s will come with the option of air suspension - this improves ground clearance (to 251mm) and wading depth (to 650mm) from the figures for Velars on conventional springs, which are 213mm and 600mm respectively. That dramatic exterior, with the slimmest headlight clusters used on a production Land Rover yet, is also made with a large amount of weight-saving aluminium and it's the most aerodynamic Land Rover ever, with a 0.32Cd figure courtesy of neat details like the flush-fitting door handles.

How about the trim grades?

Trims will run Velar (this is the base specification with the D180 engine only, the car that costs £44,830) and then split into two branches, one focused on luxury and the other on a bit of sporty styling and the like. Each level of these branches is about equal on price to its equivalent but the sporty line-up is a little more pricey, so we have S, SE and HSE, and then R-Dynamic S, R-Dynamic SE and R-Dynamic HSE. At the top is the limited First Edition, restricted to the V6s from launch. To give an idea of engine availability, the D180 is only found at four lower grades (Velar, S, R-Dynamic S and R-Dynamic SE). The D240 and P250 motors can be had at any level bar basic Velar and top-ranking First Edition. The D300 is most widespread, only unavailable in Velar grade. And the P380 is the rarest, offered just in the two HSE specs and obviously First Edition trim.

And what about that interior?

Lovely, isn't it? The defining feature is the Touch Pro Duo infotainment system, which features two 10-inch high-definition touchscreens behind 'black panel' displays, and which should assuage any criticisms of JLR's infotainment to this point. That clever twin-screen arrangement means the cabin focuses on 'elegant simplicity, sophistication and refinement', or reductionism, specifically in terms of buttons. A long wheelbase, measuring 2,874mm, allows for plenty of passenger room within and at the back is a 632-litre boot. Also, Range Rover has worked with Kvadrat to offer a premium textile material in Dapple Grey as an alternative to leather. Which is handy, if you're an animal-loving vegetarian who happens to also like premium SUVs.

Will the Velar be in Geneva?

Oh yes, but it actually got its full reveal to the world in London today. Expect to see a lot, lot more of this new Rangie in the coming weeks and months.

One more thing: where does the name Velar come from?

It is an adaptation of the Italian word 'velare', meaning veil or to cover. It was used for the prototypes of the original Range Rover, with 26 being built in the late 1960s.

Matt Robinson - 1 Mar 2017

Earlier articles featuring 2017 Land Rover Range Rover Velar

2017-02-22: Range Rover Velar previewed

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