The 2022 Range Rover Evoque keeps up appearances
The British aristocracy tends towards convoluted names, like Alice Clare Antonia Opportune Beevor, or Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor, or Land Rover Range Rover Evoque. The latter debuted in 2012 – a year before Prince George but no closer to the throne – battling high expectations. As the newest member of the Range Rover clan, the Evoque needed to project the cachet associated with its family while keeping its price tag acceptable to commoners. It was controversial, that original Evoque. Could a transverse-engined crossover live up to the Range Rover name? Would its very existence alienate buyers of high-end models? What did Posh Spice have to do with all of this? There was a two-door coupe. There was a convertible.
Well, the world accepted the Evoque, as evidenced by the fact that A) the first generation model had over 772,000 sales worldwide and B) when the second generation Evoque debuted for 2020. , it was so uncontroversial that hardly anyone noticed. Rover refined the styling of the Evoque, sculpting and refining the shape of the sloping roof, but the redesign was not a complete overhaul. The new lines look cleaner, but your neighbors might not immediately realize you swapped in your 2016 model. Unless it’s the convertible.
The Evoque still retains the concept-car styling that defined the original, with a high beltline that almost meets the roof at the D-pillar, which appears to be about six inches tall. The door handles are flush and motorized, popping out when you unlock the car – an interesting flash given that the more expensive Range Rover Velar has non-motorized folding handles. The Evoque’s fenders swell like it has rally pretensions, and that might actually happen in the 2022 P300 HST version, which brings back the 296hp engine and vector-driven dual-clutch rear axle. of torque that stopped in 2021. We drove the mid-range R-Dynamic S, which this year has the base P250 powertrain that includes a 246-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four, a all-wheel drive and brake-based torque vectoring.
Every company has a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder, it seems, and Land Rover’s P250 isn’t particularly distinctive. The Evoque can get decent acceleration from a standstill, but the nine-speed ZF automatic transmission always wants to select the highest possible gear when it’s underway. A sudden call for acceleration can therefore feel lagging because it requires both a downshift or two and time for the turbo to pick up. Dynamic mode goes a long way to solving this dilemma, maintaining lower gears and refining throttle response, should you prepare to hit a hole in traffic. The Evoque’s neat dimensions help it feel nimble on city roads, but it’s not a performance-oriented all-wheel-drive system – and in fact, if conditions warrant it, it will disengage the axle. rear and shift to the front to improve fuel economy. This is significant, given that the 22-mpg combined EPA rating of a P250-powered Evoque is only marginally better than the larger Range Rovers. The HST’s more powerful P300 powertrain is paradoxically a little more efficient at 23 mpg combined because it incorporates a 48-volt mild-hybrid system.
It may be a largely hypothetical benefit, but the Evoque brings real off-road credibility to the entry-level crossover game. It gets Terrain Response, Range Rover’s system for adapting throttle response and traction control to the trail surface. The long-wheelbase, short-overhang styling allows for good approach and departure angles. Most vehicles of this ilk don’t advertise wading depth specs, but the Evoque does — 23.6 inches — and the optional Wade Sensing system uses ultrasonic sensors on the exterior mirrors to tell you if you are approaching this limit. Another electronic off-road aid, ClearSight Ground View, shows you what’s under the vehicle by recording the video feed from the front and outside mirror cameras, then digitally transposing that patch of ground as it’s under the car. Nifty – the Lexus LX600 has a similar feature called Back Underfloor View.
Although the Evoque is new for 2020, Rover has continued to update it over the past two years. Last year it got better cabin air filtration and the Pivi Pro infotainment system, which uses its own dedicated battery to stay in standby mode when the car is off, minimizing its start-up time. . For 2022, wireless phone charging (with signal booster) is standard, as are heated seats, a power tailgate and keyless entry. You’d think all of this would have been standard on a Range Rover already, but at least they made it that way.
The interior of the Evoque mirrors the sleek design of its exterior, which is unfortunate as it means most knobs and buttons have been banished in favor of touchscreens and capacitive switches. Here, as in the new Volkswagen GTI, the dash and console are a mostly featureless expanse of glass and plastic, except for the climate control dials. Rover boasts that “the most popular features and functions can be accessed from a single home screen in as few as two taps or less”, as if navigating the touchscreen’s submenus during the conduct was an inevitability rather than an avoidable design choice.
Most of the Evoque’s options are reasonably priced, but there are certainly plenty of them. The Range Rover baby’s base price of $45,750 (the R-Dynamic S starts at $47,350) is mostly moot given that any exterior color besides white costs more. For $350, the Meridian 400-watt, 12-speaker sound system is a bargain, though spending $800 will get you a 650-watt, 14-speaker surround sound system that includes “dither shaping.” Meridian Digital”. (We don’t know what that is, but it might be worth $400 more than the 12-speaker system to find out.) Eucalyptus textile upholstery without leather and Ultrafabrics doesn’t cost extra , and it also brings faux suede on steering wheel. If you tick most of the option boxes, an Evoque HST can top $69,000 – a lot of money for a small Rover.
On the Land Rover side of the family, that kind of dough would buy you a nice Defender. But the Evoque belongs to a classier clan. It looks slick, it’s expensive, and it offers legitimate off-road capability that most owners will never use. In other words, it’s a Range Rover.
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