First look at the new Range Rover Velar

Range Rover Velar

Released on the 1st March 2017, the Range Rover Velar is the first new model in a number of years. Designed to fit in to the range, both in price, and size, between the Evoque and the larger, Range Rover Sport. The Range Rover Velar should start to hit the roads in owners hands in September 2017.

Range Rover Bloodline showing where the new Velar fits in to the range.

The Velar is 5cm shorter, 8cm slimmer and 12cm lower than the Sport. More of a coupe shape which should help in traffic and whilst parking. Compared to the Evoque it is 43cm longer, 5 cm wider and just 3cm taller. A common complaint of the Evoque is that while it is spacious in the cabin. The loadspace is often too small for bulkier items.

The new Range Rover Velar should hit the sweet spot in the range for both luggage capacity and on road practicality.

All models get the same slippery shape with the best drag coefficient of any Land Rover model. Helped in part by clever retractable door handles combined with keyless entry.

Range Rover Velar's Retractable Door Handles

Price

The Range Rover Velar is positioned, in size, between the Evoque and the Sport. . . in starting price. However the price soon starts edge towards that of the Sport once the larger engine choices and must have options have been ticked!

Range Rover Velar Models

The Velar is available in 2 derivatives – Velar and Velar R Dynamic. The latter being the sportier version. These are are further split into 3 sub derivatives or equipment levels – S, SE and HSE.  To complicate things further specification levels also change with engine choice.

Copper Accents as featured on the Range Rover Velar R-Dynamic

R Dynamic spec includes dark coloured alloy wheels, dark grey badges, grill and LED fog lights. In vogue burnished copper accents on the bumper, bonnet vents and side blades complete the look.

Spec enhancements for the R Dynamic include uprated Sat Nav and apps (more on that later). Gesture controlled tailgate and rear view camera are also included.

S spec

Quite well specced on both derivatives. Sat Nav is standard, as is LED headlamps, Meridian Sound System and Leather interior are all standard on all but the lowest powered engine model.

SE specs

Adds bigger alloys and fabulous new Matrix LED headlights. Which has adaptive beam patterns for City, Country, Motorways and bad weather driving situations.
Range Rover Velar Matrix LED headlights close up

An Adaptive Driving Beam identifies other road users and dims the part of the light cone pointing towards them. When the camera-based system recognises oncoming traffic or vehicles in front while the high beams are engaged, it adjusts the light distribution to avoid dazzling the other driver.

Upgrading to SE also enhances the Meridian Sound System from an already more than adequate 11 speaker 380watt unit, to an ear melting 17 speaker 825watt surround sound system. If this still isn’t enough for you a Signature 1600watt system is available as an option.

HSE specification

The ultimate in luxury with full Windsor smooth leather interior. An upgrade from the lessor model’s grained (but I’m sure still very nice) leather.

Range Rover Velar Windsor leather seats in Light Oyster and Ebony smooth leather

The perforations in the leather mimic the Union Jack flag of the UK This is a nod to where the Velar has been designed and where it will be manufactured.

Engines

Range Rover Velar Petrol Ingenium 4 Cylinder Engine

The Velar is initially available with 5 engine options – 3 Diesels and 2 Petrol variants. All engines are mated to an 8 speed automatic transmission.

The first is the, on paper, under powered Ingenium 2.0 Litre 4 Cylinder 180ps Turbo Diesel. Giving a Max Speed of 130 mph, 0-60mph in 8.4 Seconds and a Combined MPG of 52.5.

The same engine is available with a power upgrade to 240ps thanks to twin turbos. This equates to a Max Speed of 135mph, 0-60mph in 6.8 Seconds whilst still maintaining fuel economy of 48.7 mpg on the combined cycle. This is much more suited to the car and should be the best selling model.

A new Ingenium 4 Cylinder Petrol enters the market in the Velar. It follows the Ingenium tradition of 0.5 cc per cylinder at 2.0 litres, is turbocharged and has 250ps. This gives a useful  0-60mph of 6.4 seconds and on to a max speed of 135mph. Being petrol though, combined MPG suffers at 37.2 mpg.  A 300ps version of the engine will be available next year.

If you fancy an extra 2 cylinders there are two options in the form of a 3.0 Litre V6 300ps Twin Turbo Diesel and a 3.0 Litre V6 380ps Supercharged Petrol.

The Diesel gets to 60mph in 6.1 seconds and on to a maximum speed of 150mph whilst still giving 44.1mpg on the combined cycle.

The petrol sprints to 60mph in a blistering 5.3 seconds and is restricted to 155mph. Which is a testament to the extensive use of aluminium in the body structure which keeps the weight of the Velar as low as possible. For such a fast, big car the combined mpg of 30.1 is pretty good.

Interior

Range Rover Velar Windsor Leather Interior in Light Oyster and Ebony

The great design doesn’t end as you enter the Velar. All but the cheapest model gets a leather interior. S and SE models get grained leather in a choice of colours whilst the top spec HSE gets a smooth Windsor Leather interior.

Range Rover Velar InControl Touch Pro Duo infotainment systemThe majority of the switch gear has been replaced with two High Definition touchscreens. Further interaction with the screens is via two multifunctional ‘magic’ rotary switches which are primarily used to control the climate in the Velar.

On SE models and above a 12.3inch virtual instrument cluster is included with 4 visual themes, including a full screen 3D navigation display.

Drivers view of the Range Rover Velar InControl Touch Pro Duo with Interactive Drivers Display

Verdict

We can’t wait to get our hands on a  Range Rover Velar. It is a fantastic piece of design and is bang up to date with all the latest gadgets. It fits in well between the Evoque and the Sport. The price can increase substantially if you go crazy with the options list.

The only disappointing part is the fact that a lot of the options that are standard on other models are now cost options on the Velar.  The list of colours available at no cost are basically non metallic black or white. Unlike the Sport and Evoque which has a good list of standard no cost metallic options.

That said I still want one. . . badly.