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First drive: A. Kahn Design RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.

First drive: A. Kahn Design RS250 Evoque
Want your Evoque to stand out from the crowd? Then drop an additional 20k on an A. Kahn Design RS250 edition.

 



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| First Drive | Bradford, England | A. Kahn Design RS250 Evoque |

Overall rating: 3 3 3 3 3

The Range Rover Evoque has been a tremendous success, but familiarity has lessened its impact on the road. A. Kahn Design offers a bright, expensive solution in the altered shape of the RS250 Vesuvius Copper Edition.

Key Facts

Pricing: 59,875
Engine: 2.2 turbodiesel four-cylinder
Transmission: four-wheel drive, six-speed automatic
Body style: five-door SUV
Rivals: Audi Q3 S Line, BMW M Sport X3, Porsche Cayenne
CO2 emissions: 174g/km
Combined economy: 43.5mpg
Top speed: 121mph
0-62mph: 8.5 seconds
Power: 190hp at 3,500rpm
Torque: 418Nm at 1,750rpm

In the Metal: 4 4 4 4 4

The Evoque's already a bold looker and Kahn's styling changes only enhance that. The deeper, wider front bumper with its scalloped out black inserts housing the fog lamps is topped by a smart black grille surround with wire mesh insert. Kahn's 22-inch wheels fill the arches more convincingly too, aided by a 30mm drop in ride height. The back's busier, with a large diffuser-like housing for the larger, matte black central exhausts, and an additional spoiler on the re-shaped boot lid. Add some fairly eye-catching Vesuvius Copper (bright orange metallic) paint and it's no shrinking violet.

Inside, that bespoke custom feel continues. There's leather everywhere, diamond stitched black hides with occasional orange inserts and perforated sections. It's not to everyone's taste, but it's certainly striking. The finish is good, if not exemplary, some of the stitching a little imprecise and the carbon fibre trim panel in the centre console proving to be nothing more than a sticker over the existing material. Likewise the be-jewelled top to the pop-up rotary gear knob looks like an afterthought.

Driving it: 4 4 4 4 4

There's little point in poking around under the bonnet, as you'll find nothing new under there. Kahn will make your Vesuvius from any Evoque you want, be it the three- or five-door models, petrol or diesel. Here it's the 2.2-litre SD4, which means 190hp, a 0-62mph time of 8.5 seconds and official combined economy of 43.5mpg. That figure is likely to suffer a bit thanks to the larger wheel and tyre package though.

With 22-inch wheels and a 30mm drop in ride height you might expect the RS250's ride to be appalling. Obviously it's firmer, the suspension changes resulting in a busier ride around town, but it's not overly harsh, and the steering remains sharp and nicely weighted. While there's a bit more tyre noise at speed the compromises aren't as great as you'd believe, and most will happily accept them for the more purposeful stance on the road.

Otherwise it's everything you'd expect from the regular Evoque, which means decent performance from the 2.2-litre turbodiesel engine, it relatively smooth and punchy, the automatic shifting slickly too - if prone to hanging onto gears for rather too long at times.

What you get for your Money: 3 3 3 3 3

Your more extrovert Evoque doesn't come cheap, with Kahn's premium around 20,000 over the car it's based on. That's a big chunk, and while there's unquestionably a decent amount of work involved some of the detailing isn't quite as neat as we'd hope given the sticker price. That stick-on vinyl carbon fibre trim is unforgivable at this level, and that the original colour is obvious on the suspension mounts in the engine bay is a disappointing oversight, too. At this money some sort of performance enhancements would be appreciated as well, even a few horsepower liberated via an ECU upgrade would help its case.

Worth Noting

You don't have to have all the Kahn bits to create a whole. You could just opt for the front grille and bumper, or the suspension package and wheels if you'd rather pick and choose.

Summary

In summary, the RS250 is a good-looking re-interpretation of Land Rover's Range Rover Evoque. It might be pricey, but it's not short on attention grabbing looks, and while the execution isn't quite as good in some areas as we'd hope, Kahn won't have any trouble finding plenty of people wanting a more extrovert Evoque, both here and abroad.


Kyle Fortune. Photography by Max Earey. - 3 Aug 2012









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2012 Kahn RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.2012 Kahn RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.2012 Kahn RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.2012 Kahn RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.2012 Kahn RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.

2012 Kahn RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.2012 Kahn RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.2012 Kahn RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.2012 Kahn RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.2012 Kahn RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.



2012 Kahn RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.
 

2012 Kahn RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.
 

2012 Kahn RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.
 

2012 Kahn RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.
 

2012 Kahn RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.
 

2012 Kahn RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.
 

2012 Kahn RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.
 

2012 Kahn RS250 Evoque. Image by Max Earey.
 






 

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