Range Rover Evoque
It seems to come down to those who can live with the shortcomings caused by radical style, and those that can’t. There is a shortage of storage space compared with rivals, and a tiny rear window.
The car made a good impression with its luxury interior, easy-to-master controls, a great suspension and good power from the turbo.
The designers had their field day and created a vehicle that looks like nothing else on the road — one that gets up and goes, with a fast acting, six-speed automatic with paddle shifts.
Not enough can be said about the luxury interior. After a day behind the wheel, both off and on road, I made only one minor change in the seat position. The interior, with an abundance of luxury soft leather was a very cheery place to be with its colour touches. Certainly, it is light years ahead of the all-black interiors of other SUV’s. More legroom is needed to the rear for two adults to have the same level of comfort.
The vehicle handled itself very well off-road, driving effortlessly up a steep hill of loose dirt and rocks. Coming down was easy with the Evoque’s quick to engage Terrain Response System. A series of buttons across the centre console allows the driver to select the correct system for the road conditions about to be encountered. Ground clearance is generous, but I would guess only a few will ever take this vehicle off road.
On-road handling was better than one might expect in an SUV, and with the excellent suspension the car just sailed over the bumps and rougher gravel road surfaces.
The ventilation and audio controls took some figuring out, with audio showing up on the large colour screen at the top of the centre console. Audio sound quality from the total system was excellent.
Oxford leather dash panel, real wood finishes and premium leather seats. This includes tie-downs in the cargo area, a total surround camera system that provided a 360-degree view outside the vehicle, eight-way driver and six-way passenger seat adjustments, Xenon headlights.
Add in 20-inch wheels, satellite radio, heated windshield washer, steering wheel and front seats and blind spot monitoring.
If you like the exterior style, and loads of luxury inside — and you’re well-to-do — the Evoque sets new standards for just how nice a smaller SUV can be.