Land Rover Range Rover Review

Posted on 11. Feb, 2004 by in Auto News

Evolution is a strange thing. You start with a single cell animal, wait a few billion years and end up with Eminem. For the same reason, you start with a rough and ready off-roader, wait 34 years, and end up with a luxury car on stilts. Evolution is not a good thing or a bad thing, it's just a thing. But the question remains: the Range Rover is fit enough to survive in an automotive environment with many first-class competition?

If you lift aboard the Range Rover, says the British-built SUV its exclusivity. The RR rejects the usual luxury car sports seating position in favor of a driver's throne, complete with leather armrest. The view through the all-but-vertical windscreen enhances the imperious vibe. You sit high, master of all you survey – including from one hectare under the hood you like the playing fields of Eton stretched.

It is difficult not to the rover file the class snobbery. There's so damn much of it. From the elegantly restrained dash to the wonderful tactile switchgear, the interior offers on your needs as a discreet, sophisticated Butler. Heated seats? Press here, sir, in the middle of the air button. Satellite Navigation? We use the old BMW system. There is so much more intuitive than iDrive. Cup holder? Allow me. I'll just push this little panel and … there you are. They see fit to any size drink.

The Range Rover cabin is ergonomically perfect eye candy. It is no surprise that parent company Ford copied the style for its revised F-150 pickup. As the best-selling Ford Behemoth Rover, inside the ultimate luxury: an excess of elbow, leg and shoulder room. The Range Rover can, a semblance of professional wrestlers and their bulging belt, without cramping the style grapplers.

Of course this is an offroader epic requires a gi-Normous engine. The Range Rover of the 32-valve 4.4-liter V8 cranks out 282hp. Equally impressive, the engine unleashes a torrent of torque: 325ft. lbs. at a leisurely 3600rpms. Feel that? You will be if you put your foot. The engine bellows, the rear end squats and the Range Rover apart just plumb. The stately home on wheels rushes from zero to 60 comfortably in nine seconds, cruises in the bin and responded enthusiastically to the most gas inputs without resorting to kickdown.

And here is where we start getting into trouble. Do you really want to cane a vehicle 2,439 kg and stands over 6 feet tall weigh? Monocoque construction, adjustable air suspension with Terrain sensing software, Cornering Brake Control, Dynamic Stability Control, MacPherson struts with double-hinge forearms and: To their credit, Land Rover has every trick in the book to make the animal grip on the road tried long journey variable rate air springs (with cross-link valves under computer control) – the works. The result? As the visor says, "Avoid abrupt maneuvers."

The steering does not help. The speed-sensitive rack and pinion steering set-up is easier than a wino wallet. Although you can bike to the rover through the urban jungle with a finger, it's not nearly enough steering feel to tell you if the 19 "wheels (20" optional) stress in the twisties. With 3.5 turns lock-stop , there are also a lot of slop in the system. It is all too easy to over-elevate the helm. driving at high speed requires a gentle hand and massive concentration.

If you think well, that's the price you pay for true off-road capabilities, and why do not you just slow down to hell anyway? I'm cool with it. But the problems with the handling brings us back to square one, ask if it is a good idea to build a luxury car that will drop at every turn. I'm not so sure. I have seen three Range Rovers squeezed on racks with the front left pillar on the hips. That must hurt.

In addition, real luxury cars are all blows over. While the Range Rover is a true flying bricks, missing the calming (if limited) dynamics of a similarly priced, as costly, spatially equivalent 745iL BMW or Audi A8L. Carve through a corner in one of these bad boys, and the machine will gently remind you that you are driving something titanic, which are not preferred crowded. Do the same in a Range Rover and the alarm is not so gentle. The sudden arrival of the tippy-over effort makes it difficult to drive a Range Rover in the luxury car auto pilot psycho-bubble kind of way.

So, where is now the