The new Range Rover hybrid represents a significant move in the green motoring genre, and the car itself doesn’t disappoint. Most RR enthusiasts will be delighted to discover that little has changed in the vehicle’s core values. Greener, yes, but no less robust. On the road, it’s magnificent, while on the rockier terrain, it’s as impressive as ever.
While few would admit that manufacturers of SUVs have done all they can to promote greener driving in recent years, it should be pointed out that this particular niche in the market has played host to a huge number of environmentally-friendlier innovations over the past few months. And now, one of the major players has decided to fully enter the fray.
The launch of the new Range Rover hybrid seems somehow to represent an emphatic, almost decisive, step in the battle to win the hearts of the green lobby. As Land Rover announced its new baby to a waiting world, it was almost as if the world’s most celebrated chess grand-master was playing his final move in an epic game and declaring ‘checkmate!’.
The end of the beginning, or the beginning of the end?
The car itself has, like any other, a number of high points and one or two low ones as well, but the mere fact that Land Rover are taking this issue far more seriously is indeed a cause for glass-chinking and toasts to the future. It may even be the start of a new era altogether, in which things will never quite be the same again.
For fans of the badge itself, the first thing to say is that the main qualities of the brand are still maintained, so you can expect it to remain heavy, robust, rugged and as strong as an ox on steroids. The changes to the way the engine generates power may be ground-breaking, but inside there still beats the heart of a classic. Greener doesn’t have to mean weaker.
Incorporating a hybrid system into any car invariably adds a significant amount of weight to the vehicle, thereby negating some of the environmental gain. In the new Range Rover hybrid, however, the additional weight amounts to only 120kg, ensuring it affects overall performance in a rather miniscule way.
While the new addition to Land Rover’s ever-expanding family doesn’t come cheap, it will still appeal to those who love the badge and who would be willing to pay accordingly. We all know, of course, that if you have to quibble about the price then you probably can’t afford it, but it should be noted that you get an awful lot of car for your money.