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Cooley On Cars
2015 Land Rover Range Rover Sport SVR (CNET On Cars, Episode 72)This episode: Ranger Rover Sport SVR goes down a new road. We ask if you should buy an EV, a hybrid or neither. And new tech to help parents remember kids that have been left in cars.
[SOUND] [MUSIC] The hottest Range Rover yet. What frightens you the most about self-driving cars? And a new run at technology to keep kids from being forgotten. [SOUND] It's time to check the tech. [SOUND] We see cars differently. Nice. We love them on the road [SOUND] and under the hood [SOUND] but also check the tech [SOUND] and are known For telling it like it is. Ugly is included at no cost. [MUSIC] The good, the bad, the bottom line. This is cnet on cars. Welcome to cnet on cars. the show all about high-tech cars and modern driving. I'm Bryan Cooley. While hot SUVs are a real credible category these days and land rovers just decided to get credible within it. Not just with a fast new truck but a whole fast new division behind it. Let's talk about SVR and check the tech. [SOUND] [MUSIC] You know you're in trouble when a new model comes to market, raving about it's fast time around the Nurburgring, that most enduring of irrelevancy is to the average car buyer. This one That's exactly that but also a lot more lets drive this all new 15 Land Rover Range Rover Sport SVR check the deck. [NOISE] Now the key thing to bear in mind about a Range Rover Sport is that it's not the sport version of a Range Rover. A Range Rover Sport is its own distinct model, and it carries some of the design cues from the Evoque, particularly what they call this diminishing DLO. It's the side windows that get narrower as you go to the back of the car. When car makers make a hotter car, they always give it a more aggressive chin with bigger holes in it to get air in. Different wheels. You get some lower body cladding here and out back you got four exhaust [SOUND] pipes that are very nicely chiseled in what they call a splitter for air flow management down the middle. This is the first of a new line of cars from Land Rover that are kinda like BMW M, if you will. They come from the special vehicle operation of Land Rover but Ford already has a trademark On SVO, so their SVO is badged SVR. Now Range Rover, for that matter, Land Rover interior, always struck me as some of the most handsome and great looking layout, ergo is good, handsomeness is everywhere. Eh, it could do without this two-toned stuff. You also notice, we have pseudo sport, pseudo racing seams. In both the front row and in the back row. Because those immovable headrests are always there, it can make it a little hard to put back seats down. So that's a bit of a sacrifice for sport pretension versus practicality. And as you can see, the fold flat is kind of pseudo-flat. This is not optimized for cargo nor is there a third row available. Now we've seen this head unit before in Jag, Land Rover products. It's a unique interface to them. One of my biggest gripes is the slowness of its touchscreen response and that fact that you have to do voice input of navigation destinations in little itty bitty pieces. Two three five. two three five>> I mean, just compare. [INAUDIBLE]. How fast it is to tell you your phone to take you somewhere than to tell this thing to do something. Okay, Google. Drive to 235 2nd Street, San Francisco, California. [MUSIC] My third gripe is how many screens interrupt what you're seeing here. I can't tell you how many warning or notification screens I got that just blot out What's on the main screen that I care about. And even when I turn the volume up, after a moment or two it brings up a confirmation screen that I don't need. My ears tell me how loud it is. That just gets in the way of what I care about. And again, overlaying all of this is so much lag and delay. It's not measured in seconds, parts of seconds, but that's not okay in a car. Much brighter spot is up here in the upper left, InControl Apps. Now here's where you get an apps. Platform. You can decide what you want on which of these screens, very much like you do on your phone or your tablet, and it's all managed here through the Jag InControl App's app. On your phone, it is very much a projector app to get things here up here. But obviously, not your whole phone. Their own curated basket. The apps all come from this control panel on your phone. You've got some new ones that are called out here, like Rdo and Glympse are very recent. You can add Sygic Navigation if you don't like what Land Rover's got, as well as a few other apps, most of which aren't exactly globally famous And then down here you can see the one's I do have installed, like Parkapedia, Stitcher, Rdio. And this is where you set up the layout of your apps on the car. These are flip through screens on the vehicle, I mock 'em up here first and then they get pushed out to the car. Now, the cameras on this vehicle are interesting. You've got a variety of views and settings. Parked right now I've got the junction view. I also have a curve view that looks off to the sides off the front wings. I can set up new combinations of cameras that you don't see on any other car. So they're very camera-centric on this vehicle. Too bad that camera in the rear, at least, is so awful. In fact it's so bad, I'm pretty sure it's defective, and I'm not going to knock it. Because nobody would ship a camera with that bad registration of colors and fuzziness into a production car. [NOISE] Now up here in the engine bay is some fairly familiar Jag Landrover stuff, a 5 liter super charged V8. But because you've got a SVR badge in it it puts out more. 550 horse, that's 40 more than without that badge. 41 more pound feed of torque gets you up to 502. And of course it goes up to an 8 speed automatic only, but it's a sport automatic with faster shifts. And that power is all four wheels either in a trackish mode or in an off-road depending where you have your terrain response knob set. This vehicle is heavy, 1500 pounds despite the extensive use of aluminum. Still gets up to 60, though, in four and half seconds or better. So, where do you give? On the MPH, of course. It's rated at only 14/19. Well if you're buying a vehicle like this you didn't buy it at shoot out between it and Prius. You know the first thing that impressed me as I got in this Range Rover Sport SVR was not what it did when it moved, but what it did when it comes to a stop. This vehicle has the best auto start stop technology ever. It starts the engine almost in the time it takes to lift off the brake pedal that's very nicely done. And it helps you get the most outta that pretty [UNKNOWN]. 4MPG. The next thing you notice is definitely about going. That is the most roary exhaust [INAUDIBLE] of any car maker right now. Jag and Land Rover are obsessed with obnoxious exhaust systems, cause they're fun. The power Of course is prodigious. This Ford automatic, as they say, is definitely tight, it's quick. [NOISE] All in, the fundamental take i get comparing this to one of the hot high-ends\g or an X5M is that it is less severe. And yet it handles like a very capable car. When you press it though I imagine if I went head to head, I'm not as sharp as those two turning. [NOISE] Okay. Let's price our Rangerover Sports SVR. This is not gonna be a cheap date, as you imagine. All in, about 117.3 the way I would do it. What they've done here in this category is to hit to, I think, more bases than their competition. It's also a very comfortable daily driver, not all the competitors are, they can be high strung. And it's got serious off-road credit. [MUSIC] Find our full review on that Land Rover, Range Rover Sport SVR, a whole mouthful, awaiting you at Cars. CNET.com. Well you know not everybody is buying this vision of self-driving cars. Now I happen to think they're in for a surprise but it's important to pay attention to their reservations and the reasons that underlie them. That's of interest to the smarter driver when cnet on cars returns. [BLANK_AUDIO] [MUSIC] We're used to driving, we think we're good at it and we don't really trust computers. Those three things are the main hurdles that stand between a lot of people and buying into the self-driving future. The autonomous car that's coming. That's not gonna stop it from getting here, but along the way it will be who regulators, car makers, and just about all of us to pay attention to those who maybe need to be brought along. a little more [MUSIC] Researchers Michael Sivak and Brandon Schoettle at University of Michigan have some early answers. They surveyed five hundred and five adult US drivers in June 2015, to take their temp on vehicle autonomy. For attitudes bubbled up. Autonomy itself, most drivers, especially women want no self driving [MUSIC] [INAUDIBLE] Followed by almost as many who are open to partial self-driving. And under 16% interested in fully automated cars, at this point. The biggest naysayers to full automation were drivers 60 and older. Just 11% of them like the idea. A big problem for policy makers who think autonomy is going to allow older drivers to keep doing so safely, longer. Control. We can't yet imagine the steering wheel and pedals going away. Over 96% of the drivers said keep those century old controls, even if a car is full self driving. Interestingly, there was little difference in this response between age groups and gender. Interface Here an almost even split between those who want to tell their self driving car where to take them by a voice command versus via a touch screen. Have these folks tried automated voice command? Only eight percent of drivers want to use their phone for this command and a quaint three percent thought a keyboard and mouse might work best. Finally, notification. For decades, we're going to have partial self-driving cars that will need to hand it back to us on occasion. Clearly, we don't want to be surprised. Over 59% of us want to be alerted by a sound, and visuals, and something vibrating. About 1/5 said they can do without the vibration part. Maybe they've tried one of those Cadillacs that already has an odd vibrating alert. Seat. [MUSIC] So it all adds up to a reality check, and it will pay for car makers and regulators to double check their assumptions about our attitudes around self driving and some of the details of how we expect it to work, rather than assume that we're all going to embrace it in some homogeneous fashion. [MUSIC] Welcome back to CNET on Cars. Coming to you from our home at the Mount Tam Motor Club Just north of the Golden Gate Bridge. Well, all those years and all those headlines, and still there's no homerun technical solution to keep kids from dying locked in hot cars. [MUSIC] But Evenflo thinks they might have a way to crack the code on the road to the future. [MUSIC] [SOUND] It's sort of odd if you think about it. Your car alerts you if your headlights are left on, [SOUND] but not when your kids are left in. [MUSIC] A trickier problem to solve for, of course, but also vastly more important. [SOUND] Do you know where the parent is? No, she's not here! Oh my God. The feds tracked the problem of child fatalities in locked hot cars, but many people actually follow the work of meteorologist Jon Knoll of San Jose State University in Silicon Valley. He collates media reports and estimates that between 1998 and 2009, 494 children, about 37 each year die locked in hot cars in the US. More than half the kids who die of hyperthermia in cars are two years old or younger. About half of them were left in the car by accident by a forgetful parent. 911, where is your emergency? We just parked next to a car at Walmart. Cadillac Escalade with a baby, infant, in the carrier screaming and no one around. [MUSIC] A modern car is unfortunately a very efficient [UNKNOWN] of sorts. It's seals and insulation are deadly good at trapping solar energy. The majority of heating happens in the first twenty minutes or so. Cracking the windows has almost no effect. Evenflo has a new set of their baby seats out with a technology called SensorSafe. It's an electronic sensing technology to warn you you've got a child Buckled in the seat in the back especially a rear facing one which is another hazard in and of itself. Out of sight out of mind. Now an electronic sensing baby seat is actually not anything new. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration looked at nearly two dozen of these things back in 2012 and decreed most of them junk. [MUSIC] [INAUDIBLE] Let's see how Evenflow seeks to break the mold. [BLANK_AUDIO] Now, if you're in the front of the car, you do a one time install of this dongle that comes with the sensor safe seat. As you can tell by that end, this is an OBD2 port dongle. This goes up underneath your dash. Now, once that's installed, it stays there. You're not having to take that in and out all the time. It works on any car with an OBD-II port made since 2008, not since 1996 when OBD-II first arrived. So you've got to have a later car because that's when they implemented what's called the CAN protocol, an electronic language that that dongle relies On. Okay, now here at the back of the car, you install the seat and of course latch it in safely, that's a whole different topic. Get your child in here, and then this is the key. This is the little sensor safe clip, this green thing. Once you clip this across their chest, under arm pits, and around their legs, that locks in, now you close the loop. As soon as you drive above five miles an hour for more than a few seconds, this thing starts transmitting To the receiver we just installed that there's a child in here. Then the next time you stop and turn off the engine you get a chime instantly reminding you this is buckled around your child in the back. Don't forget them. A lot of experts like this approach better than some of the previous technologies, which were proximity based, where once you got far enough away from the car or the seat You then got a warning. A lot of folks say no, warn parents immediately so you have no chance of them getting far away and forgetting. Now, a few notes about this apparatus. If you're concerned about EMF or radiation coming off this transmitter, Evenflo says it's about the same power as a car remote key fob, which is pretty low power, and that it barely uses any time transmitting, about one second. In two hours of driving. If you wanna use this as a hand-me-down, which of course you do, the battery here is not replaceable. But you can get or buy another one from Evenflo. You just replace the whole clip. You'll buy it, if it's after the first year or so of the seat. You get a new one for free, if it's before then. If you have more than one kid, you're going to have more than one seat. Well, you can have multiples of these that report into one receiver under the dash. It's not just a one to one relationship. And if you have a Hybrid, or a car with automatic star/stop technology that would stop and perhaps throw this thing off. You need to get a separate, special receiver up there under the dash, which Evenflo will send you. And it's green instead of the one we have which is black. So electronic sensing that warns you immediately when you come to a stop, some interesting modern technology innovations for today's cars that are hybrid and have auto start, stop, and it's from a major maker at a major retailer. Walmart's got the exclusive on this for one year until summer 2016. It goes for about a 150 bucks. Now without the sensor safe tech, you can get almost the exact same seat for $90 so your definitely paying a premium here but it seems to be going down the right path. [MUSIC] Coming up your email EB or hybrid, which makes most sense for you if either? When cnet on cars continues. [MUSIC] [BLANK_AUDIO] [MUSIC] People are terrified of hand-made sports cars, British or otherwise, because they have a reputation to breaking a lot. I mean, Lotus Used to have the unfair acronym of lots of trouble usually serious. And this car doesn't feel particularly handmade. I came in expecting it, but actually it doesn't. Everything feels [UNKNOWN] built. it's a step up from where Lotus used to be. [NOISE] Find more from the Xcar team of CNet UK at cnet.com/xcar [MUSIC]. Welcome back to CNet on cars. I'm Brian Cooley here's that part of the show we take a few of your emails. This first one's coming in from Matt. And he says I'm a keen viewer of yours from Australia. On your program when you display the car stats an specs on the screen such as power and torque, weight or fuel economy. Would it be possible to add the metric figures alongside the Imperial or the American figures? He said it's difficult to make those conversions on the fly while I'm talking. Matt, I've had a lot of emails about this topic and we've decided we're going to make a change in how we present car specs. Let's run down what we're gonna do going forward. So, now, in the future, starting with our next episode of Seen it on Cars will express horse power also in kilowatts which I know is going to make you happy. That's an australian thing. Also, in PS. We're going to give you torque not just in pound feet as we do now. We'll also have that in Newton meters which is pretty much the global standard everywhere else. We're going to get the weight to you in pounds and kilograms. That's an easy one. In terms of fuel economy, this is interesting. MPG in the US, gallons per hundred miles is also a US thing, although most Americans don't even know about it, and of course, liters per 100 kilometers is very much a global standard. And finally, when it comes to acceleration, 0 to 60. I'm gonna stay with zero to 60 miles per hour. Zero to 100 kilometers per hour is so close and there's no direct mathematical conversion to really do that accurately. Now I wanted one to remember I'm giving you converted numbers of US specced cars. Not other market numbers expressed in these units. So, just know I'm translating a US car to you, not reflecting on other part of the world market vehicle. Paul in Houston writes in says I was sitting in one of our Houston traffic jams recently. My condolences. I've been in a couple of those And noticed that the cars around me reminded me today's car design cues are very, very similar, as if every car is coming out of the same design studio. In particular, he says, vehicle faces all have this narrow grill under the grill, and tend to have headlights in the same place, of the same shape, and swept back to a point Aiming toward the side mirrors. Secondly, he asks, what about the fact that almost every car seems to have a flat arch around the wheel well openings on the fender. He wants to know if there's something going on, some kind of conspiracy or some reason these cars have to look so similar. Let's take these one by one, Paul. First of all, Let's take a look at these fenders now. He's talking about this area right here, this very flat face. Car makers do this a lot today because it creates a very smooth service for better arrow dynamics. They work very hard to reduce turbulence all around the wheel opening so that fender is part of that, as well as how they position the face of the wheel flush. To the outside of the car and also how they design those spokes to try and flow air over them even as they're spinning. All of this adds up primarily to mpg gains but it also helps you in terms of noise and maybe a little The top speed. Now in terms of the face of these cars, you're talking about this grill down here at the bottom. Let's look at that a little more closely. This was pretty rare in cars a number of years ago, now it's very common as you say. And that's because the noses of cars have been pushed down a lot, sloped down and lowered, that's again for better aerodynamics. But once you do that everything in the engine bay has to move down too. So now you get a lot of radiators that are living low. Radiators for your coolant, your air conditioning and for your transmission fluid. As a result they need a real opening to breath air down here as opposed to just having some sheet metal. Also in high performance cars they'll often punch a hole in these corners Of the lower chin, to flow air in and cool the brakes. And on a lot of high trim cars, that's where they'll put the fog lights, like you see on this Chevy Impala. So a lot of things are going on down here. Largely it's part of aerodynamics, and a fair amount of it is also fashion. It's kinda a gutsy, aggressive look. [NOISE] William in Hong Kong, writes in with a question about electrified cars. He says, I'm in the market for a new car, should I get a hybrid or go all the way to a pure EV, electric vehicle. So he plans to use the vehicle for the next 10 years which one he asks, would be the better choice for reliability? I'll be honest, William. Reliability is not the first thing that comes to mind in the choice that you're trying to make I'm gonna be more concerned about driving behavior being a program for these two forward technology vehicles. Here's what you should think about. This is part of your check list. First of all charging. Do you have access to a charger? And ideally, a high current charger, not a household outlet. That's doesn't get you very far. And what is the charge time for the EV you're looking at? Secondly, what is your range? Your typical driving in a day, which you'd have to accomplish between charges. And that is gonna be a typical number, you can't always predict it. Thirdly, what's the battery warranty? This is a huge expensive component of any electric car. You want to make sure the manufacturers got you covered against eventual drain down and it wearing out to the point that it's no longer practical. Also, take a look at incentives. I don't know what the market is like in the market where you are in Hong Kong, but this can take the form of helping you with a purchase, helping you with the lease, giving you some kind of a rebate or giving you access to lanes to get around traffic that regular cars can't get in to. Now, if you're looking at a hybrid car, the list is similar but a little different. First of all, look at the payback. Hybrids tend to cost more than their gas equivalents. So see how much more, in typically thousands of dollars, and then work it out in number of years to earn that back before even it even begins To put money in your pocket. Then take a look at the types of hybrid. There are regular hybrids that generate their own electricity, there are also plug in hybrids. If you have one of those and don't drive a lot of miles, you could in theory use it as an EV most of the time, and only as a gas/electric hybrid if you go on a longer trip. After that we get into some very similar concerns about battery warranty, it's also a key component in those cars. And the same concern about incentives. My other is you're looking to keep this car for ten years. I'm pretty sure in ten years any EV or hybrid is going to be ancient technology, at least I hope so because we need some improvements in those as the market gets hungrier for them. [MUSIC] Thanks for watching. I hope you enjoyed this episode. Keep those emails coming as you can see there a bigger and bigger part of the show all the time. I really appreciate your thoughtful comments and suggestions. And let someone know about the show if you have already on social media and look for us on any of your favorite streaming platform or channels. We're probably there. there. I'll see you next time we check the tech [MUSIC] [SOUND]