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Driven: Variety key for Range Rover Velar

Range Rover Velar delivers unprecedented customer choice with 48-variant line-up

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Land Rover logo20 Sep 2017

By TUNG NGUYEN

LAND Rover has launched its new Range Rover Velar into Australian showrooms this week with 48 standard variants, as well as two additional limited-run First Edition versions, to allow customers the choice of their ideal vehicle.

With a choice of two exterior looks – the base Velar or R-Dynamic version which adds eye-catching flourishes – and six engine options across four trim levels ranging in price from $70,662 before on-roads to $168,862, Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) Australia managing director Matthew Wiesner said the new premium mid-size crossover allows the brand to be “flexible enough to provide what customers want”.

“We’ve made a very clear decision that it is our responsibility to provide choice to customers and if you want to come in and order an S with a six, whatever, fine, that’s what you want,” he said.

“In some cases you go, ‘you’ve added complexity’, and in some cases we probably have. However, what it means is that from a customer point of view, you get what you want and that’s ultimately what’s important because we shouldn’t dictate in that context.”

Land Rover’s approach allows customers to specify entry-level engines with high-specification levels and vice versa, instead of the manufacturing usually bundling greater levels of equipment with more potent, and expensive, powertrains.

“In the past, we’ve been intent on maybe pushing things out that are more dictated about what we want to push out and less about what actually the customer desires, so now we’ve taken it to another level in making sure we can address customer needs,” Mr Wiesner said.

Another facet of the new Velar that is expected to help draw in about 3000 new customers annually to the brand is its sleek, ‘avant-garde’ aesthetic, which Mr Wiesner said will draw buyers from other premium brands.

“I personally think it will, outside of our current brand, have the ability to pull from left and right, up and down, through the SUV space, but also given its strong design cues and starts and the way it handles and the way you can live with it, you know, there will be people who look at this who will be traditional passenger car buyers and others who will look at that and go ‘that’s not your typical, big tall SUV – that’s damn attractive’,” he said.

“I think Velar, a bit like Evoque was in those early days amongst small SUVs and premium hatchbacks and the role it played down there, has a very similar role in the larger space because I think it will appeal to a very, very broad audience.”

Available in two bodystyles, the base Velar sports smoother lines and a cleaner front fascia compared to the R-Dynamic versions which add Burnished Copper bumper accents, bonnet vents and side vents, as well as the badging and grille finished in Shadow Atlas.

Inside, R-Dynamic versions also gain Satin Chrome gearshift paddles and Bright metal pedals, with the sportier looking model coming in at a $6000 price premium over the standard Velar.

Engine options run the gamut with three turbocharged diesel and three petrol powertrains currently on offer.

Kicking off the oil-burning options is the D180 2.0-litre turbo-diesel Ingenium engine producing 132kW/430Nm with a zero to 100km/h sprint time of 8.9 seconds, while returning a fuel economy figure of 5.4 litres per 100km and emitting 142 grams of carbon dioxide per kilometre.

The D240 engine adds another turbocharger to amp up performance to 177kW/500Nm.

Acceleration to 100km/h is cut to 7.3s, while the engine is thirstier at 5.8L/100km and more pollutant at 154g/km.

The range-topping D300 oil-burner is powered by a twin-turbo 3.0-litre V6, producing 221kW/700Nm, while cutting the 0-100km/h time to 6.5s. The D300 drinks 6.4L/100km, while outputting 167g/km.

The base P250 petrol engine develops 184kW/365Nm from a turbocharged 2.0-litre Ingenium four cylinder, and sports a 6.7s 0-100km/h sprint time, 7.6L/100km fuel consumption and 173g/km CO2 emissions.

The newly added mid-spec P300 engine increases performance to 221W and slashes the 0-100km/h time to a hot hatch-scaring 6.0s, while also drinking 7.8L/100km and emitting 178g/km.

The flagship petrol engine is a 280kW/450Nm supercharged 3.0-litre V6, dropping the landmark triple digit sprint time to 5.7s and is the thirstiest of the bunch at 9.4L/100km and most pollutant at 214g/km.

In addition to engine choices, Velar buyers will also select from one of four specification levels, starting with the base version, moving up to the S and SE, before topping out at the HSE.

Standard equipment on base mid-size SUVs include a gesture controlled, powered tailgate, single-speed transfer box, 18-inch alloy wheels, acoustic laminated windscreen, LED headlights, heated door mirrors, electronically controlled eight-way adjustable front seats finished in suedecloth, eight-speaker sound system, automatic wipers and headlights, keyless entry, voice controls, tailgate spoiler and flush-fitting door handles.

Velar S versions adds 19-inch 5-spoke wheels, premium LED headlights with daytime running lights (DRLs), 10-way seats finished in perforated leather, 11-speaker sound system, and auto-dimming and folding side mirrors with puddle lamps.

SE grades gain 20-inch seven-spoke wheels, 17-speaker sound system, an all-digital interactive driver display, and parking aids front and rear.

Top grade HSE versions add 21-inch wheels, matrix LED headlights, 20-way adjustable seats with heating, cooling and massage functions, chrome cabin highlights, adaptive cruise control and an electronically adjustable steering column.

However, most equipment can be specified on any individual model grade through Range Rover’s extensive options list for an additional cost.

Information and entertainment is handled by a two-tiered 10.0-inch set-up, with navigation and driving statistics displayed in the top, while the bottom screen houses climate controls and drive-mode selection.

Safety systems include autonomous emergency braking, lane departure warning, reversing camera, rear parking assist, trailer stability assist, hill-start and descent control, tyre pressure monitoring system, six airbags and cruise control.

A speed limiter becomes available on SE grades, while adaptive cruise control, driver fatigue monitoring and blind-spot monitoring is added on top-spec HSE versions.

With seating for five, the second row is a split fold 40:20:40 configuration to increase the luggage load space from 558 litres to 1616L.

Measuring 4803mm long, 2145mm wide, 1665mm high with a 2874mm wheelbase, the Velar straddles the line between mid-size and large premium crossovers including the BMW X3 and X5, and Audi Q5 and Q7.

Maximum towing capacity ranges from 2400kg in the D180, P250 and P300 variants, while the D240, D300 and P380 feature 2500kg.

Colours available start with white and black, while metallic finishes include black, white, grey, silver, red, stone and blue, with premium metallic paints covering Aruba, Carpathian Grey and Silicon Silver.

Exterior packs are also available that change the colouring in the badge lettering, grille, lower blade, side strake, and tow eye cover, while the roof can be optioned with a contrasting black colour, fixed or sliding panoramic sunroof.

A number of different interior finishes are also on offer, with a mix of different colours, materials, surfaces and steering wheels and a head-up display, while options pack, including a Drive Pack, Drive Pro Pack, Park Pack, Park Pro Pack, Climate Pack and On/Off Road Pack, are available.

Other equipment choices include a Solar Attenuating windscreen that filters UV rays, a full-size spare, larger brakes, and an activity key that allows vehicle locking/unlocking from a wrist-mounted key.

First Edition versions are available with only two engine options, the top-spec petrol or diesel for $168,862 and $168,250 respectively, and finished in three exclusive colours including the standard Corris Grey, Silicon Silver for an additional $1780 or Flux Silver which adds $13,120.

Based on fully specced HSE versions, the First Edition also gains 22-inch wheels and a sliding panoramic sunroof finished in a contrasting black colour is standard, as well as 350mm front brakes, heated and solar attenuating windscreen, configurable dynamics and head-up display, privacy glass, 23-speaker sound system, heated steering wheel and full leather interior.

2017 Range Rover Velar pricing*
P250 (a)$70,662
P250 S (a)$81,762
P250 SE (a)$90,662
P250 HSE (a)$106,962
P250 R-Dynamic (a)$76,662
P250 R-Dynamic S (a)$87,762
P250 R-Dynamic SE (a)$96,662
P250 R-Dynamic HSE (a)$112,962
P300 (a)$78,750
P300 S (a)$89,850
P300 SE (a)$98,750
P300 HSE (a)$115,050
P300 R-Dynamic (a)$84,750
P300 R-Dynamic S (a)$95,850
P300 R-Dynamic SE (a)$104,750
P300 R-Dynamic HSE (a)$121,050
P380 (a)$93,462
P380 S (a)$104,562
P380 SE (a)$113,462
P380 HSE (a)$129,762
P380 R-Dynamic (a)$99,462
P380 R-Dynamic S (a)$110,562
P380 R-Dynamic SE (a)$119,462
P380 R-Dynamic HSE (a)$135,762
P380 First Edition (a)$168,862
D180 (a)$71,550
D180 S (a)$82,650
D180 SE (a)$91,550
D180 HSE (a)$107,850
D180 R-Dynamic (a)$77,550
D180 R-Dynamic S (a)$88,650
D180 R-Dynamic SE (a)$97,550
D180 R-Dynamic HSE (a)$113,850
D240 (a)$80,950
D240 S (a)$92,050
D240 SE (a)$100,950
D240 HSE (a)$117,250
D240 R-Dynamic (a)$86,950
D240 R-Dynamic S (a)$98,050
D240 R-Dynamic SE (a)$106,950
D240 R-Dynamic HSE (a)$123,250
D300 (a)$92,850
D300 S (a)$103,950
D300 SE (a)$112,850
D300 HSE (a)$129,150
D300 R-Dynamic (a)$98,850
D300 R-Dynamic S (a)$109,950
D300 R-Dynamic SE (a)$118,850
D300 R-Dynamic HSE (a)$135,150
D300 First Edition (a)$168,250
*Excludes on-road costs

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