The sport­ing life as Range Rover brings power to the peo­ple

Yorkshire Post - Motoring - - ADVERTISING SPOTLIGHT -

The Range Rover Sport brings a dy­namic, road-ori­en­tated sport­ing edge to Land Rover’s prod­uct range, slot­ting neatly be­tween the fam­i­ly­ori­en­tated Dis­cov­ery and the su­per-lux­ury Range Rover.

It all but matches the best of its sport­ing SUV ri­vals on the high­way while dec­i­mat­ing them when tar­mac turns to turf. In other words, a very ac­com­plished car in­deed.

Is it sporty? Well if it isn’t now, it’s never go­ing to be. This car’s com­bi­na­tion of air springs, ac­tive anti-roll bars and elec­tron­i­cally-con­trolled damp­ing have al­ways pro­duced a firm-on-the road ex­pe­ri­ence jus­ti­fied by its ex­traor­di­nary com­po­sure on the kind of back routes that would once have re­quired sick­bags if you were press­ing on in a large SUV.

Now it’s even bet­ter, thanks to fine-tuning of the chas­sis and an ac­tive damp­ing sys­tem that, in con­junc­tion with the air sus­pen­sion, can make cal­cu­la­tions about road and driv­ing con­di­tions over 300 times a sec­ond. There are also mas­sive Brembo brakes that man­age to bring this 2.5tonne mon­ster from rest to 100mph and back to rest again in just 15 sec­onds.

The amaz­ing 503bhp 5.0litre V8 Su­per­charged Sport model is the only petrol op­tion on of­fer to Range Rover Sport buy­ers and good for 62mph from rest in just five sec­onds if you’re quick with the steer­ing wheel pad­dles that many will want to con­trol the slicker-shift­ing six-speed au­to­matic gear­box.

That kind of per­for­mance is nice to have but in the real world, most buy­ers will end up be­hind the wheel of one of the two diesel mod­els. The orig­i­nal en­try-level 188bhp 2.7-litre V6 diesel op­tion was rightly ig­nored by many buy­ers who, rightly con­clud­ing it was any­thing but ‘sporty’, went for the 272bhp TDV8. Th­ese days, the choice isn’t quite as clear-cut, with V6 diesel power now pro­vided by an al­to­gether trans­formed 243bhp 3.0-litre unit with 29 per cent more power and 36 per cent more torque that’s now prob­a­bly the pick of the range.

Like the Dis­cov­ery, the Range Rover Sport fea­tures Land Rover’s unique ‘In­te­grated Body Frame’ twin­chas­sis tech­nol­ogy, giv­ing lad­der chas­sis-strength for off road­ing and a uni­tary body for lux­ury sa­loon-style cruis­ing. That be­ing the case, we prob­a­bly shouldn’t be sur­prised that this car is as good as it is off road but it’s still a shock to be able to be able to keep up with a GTi on a twist­ing coun­try road, then veer off to con­quer the kind of off road ter­rain you couldn’t even walk through.

Whether you like the look of a Range Rover Sport will have a big im­pact on whether you’ll want to buy one. Like the Range Rover Stormer con­cept car on which it was orig­i­nally based, it’s dra­matic, pur­pose­ful and very in-your­face, es­pe­cially now. This im­proved ver­sion fea­tures th­ese pierc­ing LED front lights and a restyled alu­minium mesh front grille above a larger air in­take that helps the pow­er­ful en­gines breathe.

If you’re af­ter a car that re­ally can de­liver ex­cite­ment on the road and ul­ti­mate ca­pa­bil­ity off it, the Range Rover Sport is one of the best places you can start your search. Though now plusher, faster and more ef­fi­cient, it’s still a car that’s hard to jus­tify but very easy to like. Which, come to think of it, ap­plies to many of the very best things in life.

For you, this may be one of them.

STUN­NING: Range Rover Sport

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