In the first 35 years of its life as a luxury SUV, Range Rover was content being a restricted-access chamber in the Land Rover mansion. Then came the Range Rover Sport in 2005, expanding the popularity, reach and urban capability of the luxury SUV. In six years, the family was ready for another baby, this time, quite literally. Now, in about the same time, Range Rover has found space for yet another model somewhere between the Evoque and the Sport. You can call it proliferation, by Rangie standards, though not by Audi or BMW standards! So ladies and gentlemen… rich ladies and gentlemen with good taste and adventure in their blood, please welcome Velar.
How big is the Velar?
Going by the first glimpse, it is quite mistakable for the Range Rover Sport especially because of the closeness in dimensions – in fact it is 7 cm wider than the Sport and has a more prominent jawline than all its siblings.
Dimensions (Length x Width (mirrors unfolded) x Height)
SPORT 4851 x 2073 x 1780 mm
Wheelbase: 2923 mm
4803 x 2145 x 1665 mm
Wheelbase: 2874 mm
EVOQUE 4371 x 1900 x 1635 mm
Wheelbase: 2660 mm
Character of Velar
Velar means the soft palette (just behind the roof of the mouth) and does this suggest the Range is going soft-roading? Unlikely, as the DNA character of a 650mm wading depth (on air suspension) and 213 mm clearance has been maintained, though the approach and departure angles are slightly south of the Sport’s. The variant of meaning Range Rover has chosen is veiled or covered. Now, does that mean a gentleman with a hidden tough side? Perhaps. Anyway, the real significance of the name is that Velar was the code name the prototype of the original Range Rover went by in the production design days.
Bruce Robertson, Managing Director of Jaguar Land Rover Middle East and North Africa, said: “Manufactured at the core of our brand in the UK, the Range Rover Velar was also put to the test through rigorous hot weather programmes in the MENA desert ensuring it was engineered for even the harshest of conditions.”
Engine and performance
The Velar is offered with a choice of five engines; three of them diesel, which might not reach these shores, and two gasoline engines – one a 2.0L Ingenium making 246 hp, and a potent 375 hp supercharged 3.0-litre V6. A 296 hp Ingenium petrol engine will join the Velar range later this year. The Velar features a ZF 8-speed automatic transmission and all wheel drive. These gasoline models have a drag co-efficient of .35 and .36 as well as 0 – 100 kmph figures of 6.7 sec and 5.7 respectively. The Velar weighs between 1804 and 1959 kilograms.
Being launched in the epoch of technological evolution, at the heart of the Range Rover Velar is an all-new, cutting-edge infotainment system called Touch Pro Duo that makes the in-car interface quicker, and more enjoyable.
In the same vein as the original Range Rover that was displayed in the Louvre Museum in Paris as an “exemplary industrial design”, the Velar was initially on display in the Design Museum, London, in a unique installation called ‘Reductionism’ that showcased the philosophy of stripping away complexity to reveal true quality.
For those who are obsessed with the Range Rover and their supreme detailing, the video gives you 15 minutes of exactly that.