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Range Rover Velar review | Auto Express

The Range Rover Velar is a supremely stylish SUV. Its slippery shape and stunning interior make it ultra desirable, but it’s the first Range Rover to heavily prioritise form over function. There’s a good selection of engines, but be aware of tight rear seat passenger space and high list prices.

The entry Velar starts at more than £46,000 but you’ll be spending a lot more than that for a Velar with all the kit you’d want. That said, who said style and fashion come cheap?

About the Range Rover Velar

The rakishly elegant Range Rover Velar slots into what used to be a yawning chasm between Range Rover’s Evoque and Sport models, giving the Indian-owned JLR group a premium contender in a segment that’s proved lucrative for rivals. 

The Velar does battle with a variety of highly-rated competitors including the BMW X6 and Mercedes GLE, not to mention the Porsche Macan, Jaguar’s own F-Pace and Volvo XC60. All of these offer great driving performances with a dash of modern contemporary style, although with its crisply tailored clothes the Velar can’t be dismissed as a country bumpkin.

Land Rover hasn’t followed BMW and Mercedes down the sporty coupe route with its latest SUV offering, but it’s the closest the Range Rover line-up gets. The Velar’s rakishly tapered roofline and elegant rear quarters are clearly not designed for maximum practicality.

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The interior of the Velar is just as appealing to connoisseurs of elegant design. Although lavishly equipped and comfortable the Velar takes a somewhat minimalist approach in the cabin, with swathes of leather adorning dashboard and doors, and an elegant central console with the twin stacked digital screens of JLR’s Pivi Pro system and a digital instrument pack creating a cool, high-tech ambience.

There’s a wide range of different engines and specifications, which some might find a little confusing at first, but buyers should be able to narrow down a choice from the available petrol, diesel and plug-in powerplants.

The 178bhp and 237bhp 2.0-litre diesel models are no longer available to order, while the 271bhp D275 3.0-litre oil-burner has also been discontinued. Existing options still include the 201bhp D200, followed by a single 3.0-litre V6 oil-burner, producing 296bhp, badged D300.

Petrols kick off with a 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine, producing 247bhp (badged P250), followed by the P400 using a 3.0-litre unit generating 394bhp. If you’re looking for a 296bhp P300 model, or a 542bhp SVAutobiography Dynamic Edition (badged P550), then it’ll have to be a used example, as both have been removed from the Velar price list. The P400e plug-in hybrid is still available – utilising a 2.0-litre petrol engine and electric motor for a 398bhp total output.

Basic Velar models score that attractive entry-level price tag, with S and SE trims followed by R-Dynamic S, SE and HSE models. Velar Edition and HST versions round off the range.

In case you’re wondering about the Velar name, it goes all the way back to the 1960s when it was used as an alias to disguise original Range Rover prototypes. It’s derived from the Italian verb ‘velare’ meaning ‘to veil or cover’.

For an alternative review of the latest Range Rover Velar, visit our sister site…

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