Motoring: Range Rover: Could it get any more luxurious?
Credit: NAUMAN FAROOQ
You might as well live in the Range Rover L. It costs less than a condo in Toronto, and it has two fridges.
Confused? The main company is Land Rover, which also has Jaguar as a partner, and both these companies are owned by the Tata Motors Group out of India.
Range Rover is a line of higherend SUVs within the Land Rover group and currently offers models such as the Evoque and the Sport. But the model that sits at the top of the ladder is the Range Rover, the original luxury SUV.
The Range Rover was first launched back in 1970. At that time, 4x4 vehicles were seen as utilitarian devices that a farmer or the military would use to get around. The Range Rover changed that perception for off-road vehicles and showed you can mix capability with style and luxury.
For decades, it had no competition, and while now other companies have also introduced luxury SUVs, the Range Rover is the best. Can the best be even better?
Yes it can. The Range Rover L is essentially a long wheelbase version of the already quite large Range Rover, with all the focus given to the rear seat passengers.
How much longer?
You get an eight-inch increase in the wheelbase so now rearseat passengers can truly lounge in style. The test vehicle was the Autobiography edition, which had proper captain’s chairs in the back with massagers built into them, along with heating and cooling features. Even these rear seats had power adjustment for reclining. Oh, and there was a fridge between the rear seats and the front seats.
You also get two LCD screens in the back with wireless headphones and privacy shades, so even if you’re watching 50 Shades of Grey in the back, passing traffic will be none the wiser.
With this level of attention gone to the rear seats, it is obvious that this model is catered to the executive crowd who gets chauffeured around everywhere. However, if you spend all the time in the back seat, you’d be missing out on one of the car’s most appealing features – the way it drives.
Under the hood lies a 5.0 litre V8 engine that has a supercharger. The net output is hence 510 hp and 461 lb-ft of torque. Power is fed to all-wheels via an eight-speed automatic gearbox, which has manual override functionality also.
Just because this Range Rover L is a big and heavy vehicle doesn’t mean it’s not quick or fun to drive. It is. The sprint from 0 to 100 km/h takes just 5.8 seconds, while its top speed is electronically limited at 225 km/h. This luxury SUV limo then is as fast as some sports cars.
No other SUV rides and handles like this does. There is such a sense of effortlessness with this vehicle that is unmatched. This is perhaps one of the only vehicles on sale in Canada that I would love to take on a cross-country tour, and I know I’ll arrive at the other coast feeling relaxed.
With features such as blind spot monitoring and active cruise control, covering distances was effortless.
Unlike most luxury SUVs, the Range Rover L still has a terrain response system with adjustable ride height and an around view camera system. So this one can actually handle going off the paved road – a 29.5 cm ground clearance is unmatched in the industry.
The Range Rover L is the height of luxury, and as you’d expect, the price is similarly high too. This long wheelbase model has a base price of $120,590. The Autobiography edition with a few extra options had a sticker price of just over $161,000. But look at it this way, it is still cheaper than buying a condo in Toronto, and the only vehicle I think that offers the same level of luxury is the Rolls Royce Phantom, which costs three times more.
Complaints? Yes, I had to give it back.