There’s some kind of aura that comes into play while you’re commanding a new Range Rover. Actually, I take that back. The prestige factor is deafeningly apparent, but it’s more than just the name that makes the Range Rover a high end make. You can sense the hundreds of thousands of hours spent defining its visually captivating design, and presumably more building the advanced technology that compliments it. You can notably feel the confidence slipping off every curve.
This is the 2016 Range Rover Evoque.
2016 Range Rover Evoque Stats
- Type: Luxury Compact Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV)
- Engine: 2.0L Turbocharged I-4
- Power: 240hp
- Fuel Economy: 7.8L/100 km
- MSRP Base: Starts at $49,990 (CAD)
Aesthetic of the Evoque
The Range Rover Evoque is the older, more gentlemanly brother of the Land Rover Discovery. It’s definitely smaller than the majority of the Land Rover fleet. As a crossover it carries a low profile design than sneaks through traffic with an elegant swiftness to it.
The shortened height of the Evoque is one of the first things that stand out. In comparison to the Land Rover LR4 that towers over it, both cars nearly sharing a similar price point (when fully loaded). However if chunky SUVs are of less interest to you, the Evoque is the preferred.
The 2016 model of the Evoque sports a hefty collection of upgrades, including a beautiful reshaped front bumper, two new grille designs, and all LED headlamps. The test vehicle I received was in Santorini Black and, of the three new wheel designs, was secured on 18″ alloy silver style (506) wheels. I personally would have preferred the white model, mainly because the contrasting of bottom-white vs. top-black is a total eye catcher.
Inside the Evoque is another experience all together. The 2016 Evoque features new seats and enhanced door casings, made with premium soft-touch materials. It’s soft enough to maybe even cushion you a bit in the event of an accident (but don’t quote me on that). The new Evoque also has three new interior colour choices, Lunar Ice, Vintage Tan and Dark Cherry, for a total of 13 to choose from. My test drive came equipped with the Ebony/Ebony Grand Leather Pack and, like all the other colour options, are contrasted with a brushed metal finish.
The low headroom may be more difficult if you’re of the taller nature, but don’t quote me on that because I’m under 6′ tall. Passengers are also given a treat from above: a large moon roof that spans the entire cabin, but much like the Discovery Sport, it does not open.
Because of a slight schedule error, I was able to briefly test out two optional features for the Evoque. An option you just absolutely cannot pass up is the massage chairs which, as you might expect, is a must after the first time you drive with it. It not only feels exhilarating to drive while the massage function works your middle to lower back, but it also prepares you properly for when you’re heading to a meeting or an important outing.
The other optional feature is the maximum speed limit notification. Using the GPS, the Range Rover Evoque is able to show the speed limit for the streets you’re currently driving on. It is displayed both in the dashboard and in the holographic windshield display. It really keeps you in check more than you think.
Technology in the Evoque
- All-Terrain Progress Control for when you’re facing treacherous conditions (mud, sand, gravel, you name it).
- 8″ Touch Screen with Built-in Infotainment System, upgraded for the 2016 model for full multimedia and WIFI hotspot support.
- InControl App System which enhance your interface by allowing you to download third party apps on your mobile device to play your audiobooks from Audiobooks.com and stream music from Stitch.
- Eight-way Power-adjustable Front Seats and if comfort is a priority for you, Fourteen-way Seats with Optional Massagers.
- As mentioned earlier, the Dashboard Hologram with Max Road Speed help keep your eyes on the road while monitoring your speed without interruption. And yes, it’s really a hologram.
- Surround Camera System for total visibility in and around the car, which really do help with any limited visibility.
- Blind Spot Indicator which has since helped countless drivers switch lanes with ease.
- Park Assist gets you into parking spaces easier than ever before, including parallel park, perpendicular park, and exit a parking space.
As a final and important note, I have to say that the Meridian Audio System may quite possibly be one of the best surround sound experiences I’ve ever heard. I’ve been lucky enough to hear many sound systems, from Bose to Sony to aftermarket, and the Meridian can play the most crisp music and could easily fool someone into thinking this wasn’t provided by Land Rover. It really is a treat to experience.
Driving the Evoque
Placing your hands on the door handle activates the remote keyless entry system, which automatically unlocks and shines a Land Rover spotlight where your feet is. Climbing inside and pressing the start button reveals the unique gear wheel and powers on the super bright LED headlamps. The 2016 Evoque is 18% more efficient than the top selling Land Rover model, taking your premium gas further than ever before.
The engine is powerful and fast, taking you from zero to 100 km/h in 7.6 seconds with a top speed of 217 km/h. The handling is absolutely incredible and you shouldn’t have any problems taking corners and changing lanes. It does drive small when you’re zipping through traffic, which is a plus when compared to its larger bodied counter parts.
The Bottom Line
The 2016 Range Rover Evoque is in a unique position – it’s smaller than many other compact SUVs, offering enhanced mobility and a beautiful design, at the sacrifice of rear visibility and potential trunk space issues. The finish, both inside and out, are on par with what you’d expect from the luxury angle, and Land Rover fans can rejoice that the new 2016 upgrades give a healthy dose to the visual factor. Beyond that, upgrades to driving experience are sparse aside from the new diesel engine, that I hope to get behind one day, but as with most things with Land Rover: if it ain’t broke.. well, you know the rest.