When I was in my 20s I bought a secondhand 420 V8 Mercedes with a 4- speed auto box and oodles of power. I really thought I was the cat’s whiskers at the time and it even had active suspension to help get the tank through the corners. That was the good old days, or so I thought. Then came Land Rover with the Discovery 3 and the big body Range Rover, followed by the Freelander 2, the sleek Evoque and powerful Discovery 4 with top- ofthe- range luxury and power matched with the necessary handling set of skills. And if all this wasn’t enough, Land Rover surprised the motoring world with the awesome beast that is the Range Rover Sport. But in 2014, we anticipate the arrival of the new and updated Evoque MY14 with its 9- speed ZF gearbox. Talking exterior, the Evoque looks similar with some subtle changes of which the most distinct is the newly styled rims. Although the new auto transmission will boost economy, the engine choice is still the same. The two diesel engines seem to be the most popular with an option of the 2.2 L TD4 110 kW or the SD4 140 kW. The petrol option is the 2.0 L Si4 with 177 kW which also does duty in the Ford Focus ST. Apart from some styling tweaks there are seven new driver assistance features. The Si4 Petrol variants will have an active driveline with on- demand AWD, which defaults to FWD over 35 km/ h. When the system’s sensors detect the need, it activates the rear diff within 300 milliseconds. The Evoque boasts active torque distribution via an electronic differential ( e- diff) that monitors traction at the rear end and distributes the power between the wheels. Some other driver assist options will be queue assist, forward alert and intelligent emergency braking systems. Sensors are put to work in helping the vehicle centre itself in angle parking bays and automatically exit parallel parking spots. Other options will be traffic sign recognition and sensors detecting oncoming traffic and lane departure. This new Evoque promises one a hell of a ride. Join us next month as we test the new Evoque in Botswana and Zambia.