2012 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque Photo
Quick Take
The era of truly coupe-like SUVs dawns, finally, and the 2012 Range Rover Evoque nails it with turbo thrust and carlike handling. Read more »
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With its bulbous wheel arches, squinting headlights, shallow windows and dramatically sloping roof line, the Evoque has cartoonlike proportions.

Inside Line »

The Land Rover LR2 and Range Rover Evoque must rank as two of the best-differentiated platform mates out there.

Motor Trend »

With its rising beltline and rear-sloping roof, the LRX was reminiscent of the Mini Cooper, albeit on a somewhat larger scale

Car and Driver »

This thing is going to sell by the shipload for one basic reason: It looks cool.

Automobile »

And it is a pleasure to finally say, after so many other vehicles that need excuses for their mug shots, the Evoque is equally alluring in photos and in person. The bulldog composition of its big face that tapers to a svelte tail, to our eye, works in every color.

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Pricing and Specifications by Style
$41,145 $44,145
5-Door HB Pure Plus
Gas Mileage 18 mpg City/28 mpg Hwy
Engine Turbocharged Gas I4, 2.0L
EPA Class Sport Utility 4WD
Drivetrain Four Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity 5
Passenger Doors 4
Body Style Sport Utility
See Detailed Specs »
8.2 out of 10
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The Basics:

BMW X6s and Infiniti FXes of the present, AMC Eagles of the past--the coupe-like crossover vehicle is a trend that's been in gestation a long, long time. And man, has it produced some ugly offspring.

Now it's spawned the 2012 Range Rover Evoque, and finally, at long last, it makes hot sexy sense. 

The Evoque may be the first truly sensuous SUV in history. It's a captivating stiletto heel in a closet full of Land Rover earth shoes. Some loose family features are appliqued on its taut, angular body--one that, you won't be surprised to hear, has a fan in the form of taut, angular hominid Victoria Beckham. But those are mostly for show, little geocaching leftovers of Range Rover's past. This soft-roader is all about tomorrow, and it lives to be seen with every hair in place, not covered in muck.

Erase some of the Rover-bred notions you've applied to the Evoque's performance, the ones that imply trucky handling and rustic V-8 torque. There's even less Landie here. Derived from the LR2, the Evoque throws down an entirely fascinating new gauntlet with its 240-horsepower, turbocharged four-cylinder. It's coarse on the go, with plenty of drivetrain noise and noticeable turbo lag, but the smallville drivetrain gives up nothing to the heavier, less strong LR2 and it sets the Evoque apart from the bigger Rovers that luxuriate in eight-cylinder streams of torque. It's an urgent, attention-craving piece, as whizzy as an Acura RDX, with similar fuel economy of 19/28 mpg.

All-weather traction is a forte, given its Terrain Response dial-a-mode all-wheel-drive system, and the Evoque's steering does a great imitation of the units in compact Volvos and Fords. The light touch follows through to the most dynamic model, with its magnetically-controlled suspension and muted, supple ride. And it still has more than eight inches of ground clearance, should you get high-centered on some of the last-season stuff stacked on the curb at Saks.

If you expect to give up a lot, other than extra cash, to fit into the Evoque lifestyle, you may want to try one on for size first. There's less room than the LR2, but the Evoque is wider, so overall interior volume isn't intolerable. Up front it's quite comfortable for adults, a little less so in the back seat but not objectionably so, so long as you've bought into the coupe-like premise. What's not easy to swallow is a big adult gut, if you have to clamber into the back seat of three-door Evoques. Meanwhile, the car itself can tote almost a couple dozen cubic feet of luggage, no matter which body you choose.

Land Rover's tackling the brand-stretching Evoque launch with three models and those two body styles. The five-door comes in Pure, Prestige and Dynamic models; the two-door skips Prestige trim. All versions have the standard-issue power features, entertainment features like Bluetooth, USB, and an LCD touchscreen to drive the Meridian audio system as well as phone and optional hard-drive navigation systems. Opt for Pure or Dynamic versions if you want splashy colors with twists of Alexander McQueen; get into a Prestige if your turn-ons include libraries, mahogany paneling, and anything by Laura Bennett. By any means possible, spend up for the panoramic roof, and let it light up the cocoon-like cockpit.

It's toyed with hybrid concepts, but now Land Rover can lay claim to the greening of SUVs, since the Range Rover Evoque's slimmed-down body and downsized drivetrain pay it forward with better gas mileage and, by extension, a happy planet. But the Evoque does something even more historic: it shifts the whole Range Rover brand out of the SUV muck, and pitches it into the future on a savvy, fashion-forward bias.
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