Car Reviews Reviews

Land Rover Range Rover Sport SVR Review

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An SUV which weighs 2.4 tonnes, claims to deliver performance of a sports car. Howz that for an introduction.

Car buyers around the world are obsessed with SUVs, from the compact Ford EcoSport to mammoth G Wagen, there is a lot of option on offer today, than ever before.

Everyone wants to own one and so almost everyone does. They are huge, practical, can stuff in a lot of people and on top of it, especially in India, takes your social status to a new level. But what if you are someone who wants an SUV with a supercar machine in it?

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Land Rover is a brand that has been building remarkably luxurious and outrageous offroad machines since most of us weren’t even born and they have been on the epitome of building the pure SUV. But in recent years with the competition showering in their performance oriented variations, the factory boys at Coventry have gone a step ahead and set up a Euro 20 Million facility called the SVO or the Special Vehicle Operations. The first product they revealed is the Range Rover Sport SVR, their answer to the likes of BMW’s X5M, Porsche Cayenne Turbo and the Mercedes G63 AMG.

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The R in the SVR stands for Racing, something that is akin to the numbers this car is carrying. 542 bhp and 670 Nm of torque which are enough to propel this preposterous machine from 0-100 in 4.7 seconds – which is supercar fast. The engine is a 5.0 litre V8 with a supercharger fitted so it has no boost lag whatsoever. The power is channelized through a super quick 8 speed ZF gearbox to the 4 wheels. They tested the Range Rover Sport SVR at the Nurburgring and it did a lap in 8 minutes 14 seconds. This is staggering considering that it is a 2.4 tonne SUV we are talking about.

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On the outside it is much angrier to look at than the tidy standard Range Rover Sport. There are black bits in the grill and in the vents on the hood and also the side cooling vents. There is also a huge black intake vent in the front bumper which also deletes the fog lamps for the massive supercharged V8 to drink in more air. The car supplied to us has an Estoril blue shade which is named after the shade of the sea on the beaches of the city of Estoril in Portugal. 4 tailpipes at the rear look cohesive with the black and blue theme and suggest that this really is a very serious car indeed. The 21-inch rims are finished in brushed aluminium and are hooked up with some nice Pirelli Scorpion Verde All Season tires.

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Step inside and you will be instantly greeted by the sporty bucket seats. There is leather everywhere we laid our hands on and complimenting that, is the carbon fibre bits instead of the standard wood panels. There is SVR embossed onto the seats which remind you every time the origins of this machine.

Overall, it does scream out loud inside out of its hilarious performance credentials. The SVR is running on 4 independent electronically actuated air suspension whose height can be lowered for fast driving and increased for playing some serious offroading games. Best of both worlds. Really? Let’s find out.

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The moment you start the engine, the baffles in the exhaust are opened wide and the glorious bark can be heard from yards away. Just a slight nudge on the accelerator pedal, take it over 3000rpm, and it gets even louder. First things first, we switch the car to comfort mode and the suspension set to the supplest setting, as we are driving over partly broken north Mumbai roads. Even then, we could feel every pothole and undulation. It got worse when the speed would decrease. The bucket seats are thin and are not properly cushioned to absorb the jerk filtering through. We had quite a tough time being comfortable driving the car around within city limits.

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We soon managed to get out of the city, and on the highway, the roads where this car will show its true potential. We switched to the Dynamic settings. Immediately, the throttle, gearbox and suspension settings were sharpened. The SVR started doing triple digit speeds with utmost ease and all of the antagonism started washing off into the oblivion of absolute driving pleasure.

We took on the corners at high speeds and not once did the SVR showed signs of instability. The air suspensions were doing an astonishing job of negating possible body roll and the gearbox is super quick at upshifting and downshifting gears and it absolutely felt like driving an F-type R on stilts.

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There is sense of power that the Range Rover Sport SVR creates when it cruises down the city roads with a few blips of glorious barks produced from the exhaust, it does get all the attention one needs out of a performance car, which in this case also seats your family of 5 and 2 pitbulls in the boot.

But as the night falls and roads get gloomy the headlights play spoilsport. With the Xenon headlamps setup there is a considerable amount of spread in the headlights but there is no beam giving us an overall bad experience of driving the car at night. The infotainment system is old school with ageing graphics and a lesser sensitive touch and so is the sound system which feels less at place in a car that costs above Rs.2 crores.

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But in the truest of sense the SVR makes a great case for itself at being a bad and brash SUV. If you are the kind who loves to play with wild things, this should be your weapon of choice.

It is good to be bad.

Specs

Engine – LR-V8 5.0 Litre Supercharged Petrol
Capacity (cc) – 4,999.7
No. of cylinders – 8
Driveline – Four Wheel Drive (4WD)
Transmission – 8-speed
Power kW (r/min) – 405 (6,000-6,500)
Torque (Nm) – 680 (2,500 – 5,500)
Max speed (km/h) – 260 kmph
Acceleration secs 0-100kph – 4.7s
Fuel Capacity (l) – 105

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Dimensions

LENGTH – 4850 mm
WIDTH (WITH MIRRORS FOLDED) – 2073 mm
HEIGHT – 1780 mm
WHEELBASE – 2923 mm
TURNING CIRCLE – 12.1 m
Ground Clearance – Off-road height 278 mm, Standard ride height 213 mm

Features

EXTERIOR

Acoustic laminated windscreen
Powered windows (front and rear) with remote power locking
Rain sensing windscreen wipers
Heated rear window
Winter wiper park position (only available in cold markets)
Follow me home lighting
Automatic headlights
Rear fog lights
Side repeater indicators in mirror
Centre High Mounted Stop Light
Hazard lights under heavy braking
Power adjustable, heated, power fold exterior mirrors with auto-dimming function
Daytime Running Lights (DRLs)
Left to right hand drive easy config headlights
Roof rack mounting provisions
Heated windscreen
Laminated front door, toughened rear door and quarter light glass
Locking wheel nuts
Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS)
Tyre Repair System
Bright quad tailpipes

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TRANSMISSION AND DRIVING DYNAMICS

Trailer Stability Control
Electrical towing preparation
Front and rear recovery hooks
8-speed Automatic Transmission with CommandShift 2
Electric Parking Brake (EPB)
Speed Proportional Electronic Power Assisted Steering (EPAS)
Emergency Brake Assist (EBA)
Anti-lock Braking System (ABS)
Cornering Brake Control (CBC)
Dynamic Stability Control (DSC)
Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD)
Electronic Traction Control (ETC)
Hill Descent Control (HDC)
Four Corner Air Suspension (FCAS) includes auto-access height
Reactive Grounding Response
Twin Speed Transfer Box (High/Low Range)
Adaptive Dynamics
Dynamic Response
Terrain Response 2
Torque Vectoring
Command Driving Position
Gradient Acceleration Control (GAC)
Gradient Release Control (GRC)
Switchable Active Sports Exhaust
Low Traction Launch (not available Hybrid)

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INTERIOR FEATURES

Dark Engine Turned Aluminium trim finisher
Alston headlining (Cirrus, Ivory and Ebony dependant on colourway)
Single blade sunvisor
Configurable Interior Mood Lighting
Front and rear premium carpet mats
Power adjustable steering column
Driver and passenger sunvisor with illuminated vanity mirror
Pedal – Footrest
Front map lights
Centre armrest with cubby box
Front door mini stowage pocket with rubber mat
Front and rear cupholders
Secure glove box stowage
Bright sports pedals
Auto-dimming interior mirror
Illuminated aluminium front treadplates with Range Rover script
Leather steering wheel
Four-zone Climate Control
Noble Plated Paddle Shift
Gesture tailgate / boot lid
Roller loadspace cover
Load compartment light
Loadspace mounting provisions
Perforated Oxford leather with SVR pattern
Head restraints 2-way adjust for driver and passenger
Map pockets (rear of front seats)
Head restraints 2-way adjust for second row
2 ISOFIX child seat fixings (upper and lower Anchorages)
Centre armrest
Heated front seats with heated rear seats
Style 9 – 16-way / 16-way SVR sports powered seats with memory

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SAFETY AND SECURITY

Intrusion sensor
Customer configurable autolock
Single point entry, customer configurable
Power operated child locks
Driver and passenger airbags (side, seat-front, thorax, pelvis)
Front height adjustable seat belts
Roll Stability Control (RSC)

CONVENIENCE

Front Park Distance Control
Rear Park Distance Sensors with visual display
Cruise Control
Speed Limiter
Surround Camera System
360° Park Distance Control
Keyless Entry

MULTIMEDIA

CD/DVD player
Navigation system
Bluetooth® phone connection and audio streaming*
USB socket in cubby box
Auxiliary power sockets (front, second row and loadspace 12V)
25.4cm (10) capacitive Touchscreen
All Terrain Info Centre
InControl Touch Pro
Meridian™ Surround Sound System (825W) with 19 Speakers
TFT virtual instrument panel

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