In many ways, Range Rover Evoque bought in a style statement in the luxury SUV space and wasn't a bad choice to drive it down during the chaotic auto expo days to and fro in the infamous Delhi/NCR traffic. Land Rover and Range Rover line-ups haven't been so good looking until the arrival of the Evoque in its line up. The SUV got a facelift in 2016 and in 2017 the company replaced the 2.2L engine with a new 2.0L four-cylinder engine from the Jaguar Land Rover 'Ingenium' family. The style got a much needed mechanical change but the luxury, and its off-roading capabilities remain the same.
We got the Range Rover Evoque HSE trim and the strong intimidating design of the SUV makes a bold statement and increases the drivers' confidence immediately. It is the smallest SUV in the Land Rover family but looks very proportionate and now brings in a better efficient engine along with the start-stop system to the popular Evoque.
Range Rover Evoque has been upgraded to the latest infotainment system that looks more compact and has been placed perfect position. The touchscreen is smooth and responsive and also supports Apple Car Play and Android Auto. The SUV now is better than before and provides a sense of comfort while driving. We drove the SUV for over 100kms for over 5 days in heavy traffic and smooth driving conditions and the Evoque was a delight.
The new 2.0L diesel engine on the Evoque is the same as on the Jaguar F-Pace and Jaguar XF but with a much better-tuned gearbox. The new engine is less a bit less powerful than the older one but feels only on paper. It makes 180 hp and 430 Nm of torque. The SUV delivers enough power when required. However, the steering felt a bit on heavier side on low-speeds despite reduced engine weight. The pick-up is fast and the overall drive is silent. There is a lot of power at lower RPMs.
The nine-speed gearbox developed by ZF is fun but a bit disappointing at low speeds and misses that quick shift required and is about a second late. Range Rover Evoque does not offer the sport feel but it wasn't built for that, however, at top-speed, the drive is sturdy and keeps asking for more.
The new upgrade on the Evoque is worth that extra cost. At about Rs 50 lakh it is the best looking SUV to buy. But the SUV does not offer as much as space at that cost. The baby Range Rover has managed to delight its customers and has been reporting growth. The company bringing in the convertible RangeRover Evoque to India itself shows JLR India's confidence on Evoque SUV. Land Rover SUVs have traditionally been known for its large size and off-roading abilities, Range Rover in specific attract more luxurious features. However compact dimensions of Evoque and a well-tuned engine makes the smallest Range Rover big of driving fun.
Range Rover Evoque is certainly going to attract the young first time SUV buyer and the new upgrades will ensure smiles in this SUV even in traffic.