The Land Rover Range Rover is now in its fourth generation. Most significantly, Land Rover shaved an incredible 700 pounds from its curb weight during the 2013 redesign, and the current Range Rover weighs only 4,850 pounds. This was achieved thanks to copious use of aluminum, which now makes up much of the unibody as well as both front and rear subframes.
Five Range Rover models are offered: base, HSE, Supercharged, Autobiography and SVAutobiography. Base and HSE models are powered by a supercharged 3.0L V6 engine capable of 340 horsepower. In the Supercharged trimmed Range Rover, a supercharged 5.0L V8 is utilized. The V8 makes 510 horsepower -- enough to make the Range Rover startlingly quick. The SVAutobiography takes things a step further with a 550 hp version of the same engine. Maximum speed on models so equipped is 155 mph. A turbocharged 3.0L V6 diesel makes an excellent compromise between power and efficiency. It makes 254 horsepower but an intense 440 lb-feet of torque. The highway fuel economy is estimated at 29 mpg.
All Range Rovers come with an 8-speed ZF automatic gearbox, which features steering wheel paddles for complete driver control.
All Range Rovers are equipped with Terrain Response 2 Auto, Land Rover's next-generation system of off-road control. The system provides enhanced capability across every terrain and automatically adapts to driving conditions and road surfaces. Additionally, Range Rovers feature a permanent 4-wheel drive system that splits torque 50/50 front to rear, along with a 2-speed transfer case for high and low ranges.
Range Rovers include 19-inch alloy wheels, auto-leveling xenon headlights, power-folding and heated exterior mirrors, heated and rain-sensing wipers as standard equipment. Front and rear parking sensors with display, grained leather in one of three colors, a choice of veneer appliques, power seating with heated front seats, a 380-watt Meridian sound system, 3-zone climate control, Bluetooth hands-free connectivity, hard disk navigation on an 8-inch touchscreen and satellite and HD radio are also included.
Upgrading to the HSE adds 20-inch wheels, several more interior leather choices, soft-close doors and heated rear seats. Supercharged models are similarly equipped but feature 21-inch wheels, in addition to the more powerful engine. Finally, the Autobiography comes with all the bells and whistles, including adaptive xenon headlights, 17 interior leather options, perforated climate-controlled front seats that also feature multi-mode massage functionality, power reclining rear bench seat, a leather headliner, 4-zone climate control, programmable ambient lighting, adaptive cruise control, a blind-spot monitor, an even more powerful Meridian audio system and a rear seat entertainment with twin touchscreen displays. Autobiography, Supercharged and HSE Range Rovers are all available in long-wheelbase versions, which adds 7.3 inches to rear seat legroom.
Options allow for even more exclusivity in the Range Rover. The options list offers massaging front seats, front console coolers, surround cameras and full-size panoramic roofs.
Finally, safety is paramount on the Range Rover, and it comes loaded with a full slate of airbags and driving aids such as traction and stability control, cornering braking control and roll control.
Behind the wheel of the British beast
I walked out of Ikea with my pal, our cart loaded up with a Tyssedal dresser, a Poäng chair and a full-size, 80-inch long Billy bookcase. Usually Ikea runs are fraught with thoughts of, "How the hell will I get this home?" but not when your delivery vehicle is a 2018 Land Rover Range Rover Long Wheelbase. I pushed a button to lower the rear seats and freed up the 81.6 inches of floor length. We loaded up our flat packages with room to spare, and were on our way to an afternoon of Allen wrenches and wooden pegs.
No, your average Range Rover shopper probably won't be making many Ikea runs unless it's to outfit their progeny's Ivy League dorm room, but it's nice to know it's up to the task.
The Range Rover is the ne-plus-ultra of the Land Rover lineup. Translation: it's the biggest, baddest, most expensive Land Rover you can buy. The base model and HSE are available with a 3.0-liter supercharged or turbodiesel V6, while a 5.0-liter supercharged V8 is on tap for the Supercharged, Autobiography and SVAutobiography Dynamic trims. A plug-in hybrid P400e joins the fray in 2019. The Rover is available in standard or long wheelbase specification, and all models are four-wheel drive and feature an eight-speed automatic transmission. Though there is easily room for three rows of seats, the Range Rover only comes with two. Prices start at $87,350, which seems downright cheap when compared to the SVAutobiography's starting price of $207,900.
The Good High-end luxury, a powerful motor and excellent off-road capability make this full-size SUV an all-around star performer.
The Bad Electronics were unreliable on our tester. InControl Touch Pro Duo infotainment system is slow and frustrating. No Apple CarPlay or Android Auto.
The Bottom Line If you have the coin, the Range Rover is a good choice for those who need one of the biggest SUVs available.
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