Land Rover's smallest truck, the LR2, is new for the 2008 model year. It's a recreation of the discontinued Freelander, and from everything we've seen, it should be successful.
Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by CNET Networks
The LR2 incorporates Land Rover design cues, including the front grille and side engine vents, making it look like a small Range Rover.
Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by CNET Networks
Seating in the LR2 is limited to five, with a large cargo area in back.
Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by CNET Networks
Our review LR2 is marked as an SE trim level, but as that is the only trim level available, at least in the U.S., it's a superfluous designation.
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The cargo area is enhanced slightly by a rise in the roof, a classic Land Rover design cue. The back seats can also fold down.
Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by CNET Networks
The LR2 includes as standard a power sunroof over the front seats, and a second fixed sunroof, what Land Rover calls an Alpine roof, over the rear seats.
Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by CNET Networks
We were more impressed with the LR2's dashboard than with past Land Rover models we've seen. The company has reduced the broad expanses of black plastic, that detracted from the luxury feel of the cars.
Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by CNET Networks
We would have liked better integration between the cabin gadgets. The LCD only shows navigation, while the radio display shows audio and cell phone information.
Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by CNET Networks
The navigation interface is very usable in the LR2, and gives you a choice of three routes when you enter a destination.
Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by CNET Networks
We particularly like the design of the menu buttons on the navigation system. These blue buttons slide out from the left side of the screen.
Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by CNET Networks
The points-of-interest database wasn't quite as extensive as we would have liked, but it's not bad. It includes useful travel destinations, but no retail stores, which would be helpful for running errands.
Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by CNET Networks
We knew Land Rover was serious about the stereo system when we spotted speakers mounted in the D pillars.
Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by CNET Networks
In a departure from other Land Rover models we've seen, the stereo, which sounds very good, plays MP3 and WMA CDs. The display also shows track information.
Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by CNET Networks
Land Rover also includes a well-placed auxiliary input jack for MP3 players. It's at the rear of the center console, which keeps cables from dangling into the driver's footwell.
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The rear audio controls are an interesting inclusion. They let the rear seat passengers control CDs in the car's six disc changer.
Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by CNET Networks
The Bluetooth cell phone integration is very good, copying over the phone's contact list, and keeping a received calls list.
Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by CNET Networks
The LR2 wouldn't be a true Land Rover without some off-road credibility. It comes with Land Rover's Terrain Response System, which makes it easy to fine-tine the car for different surfaces.
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The LR2 feels as top-heavy as any SUV when cornering, but it does have an array of stability and anti-roll programming.
Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by CNET Networks
The six speed automatic in the LR2 shifts seamlessly. It includes three modes: drive, sport, and manual gear selection.
Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by CNET Networks
The 3.2-liter inline six cylinder engine seems like a good choice for the LR2, as it offers reasonable power and better economy than a V-8.
Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by CNET Networks
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