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The Land Rover Range Rover Evoque defines trendy--yup, it's a "coupelike crossover"--but somehow it defies the quicksand that's sunk other star-crossed attempts at this kind of SUV husbandry. Where the BMW X6 and Infiniti FX underwhelm on room and overwhelm on price, and where the MINI Paceman un-satisfies, the Evoque wins us over. And it's not all based on its wardrobe choices.
For 2013, a range of updates and a new entry-level model bring a freshness to the Evoque in its second year on the road. Not that its design needed any freshening in the first place; it's the most comely crossover we've seen--perhaps ever. While there's still a vague resemblance to its blocky, slab-sided Land Rover complements, the Evoque pares it all back to a sleek, angular form that looks at home in the city as no off-roader truly can.
The Evoque still retains its off-road DNA, too, though it's less obvious than it is elsewhere in the brand's offerings. A new off-road navigation feature in navigation-equipped models brings a better sense of direction to off-book excursions, while Terrain Response electronics and MagneRide dampers help the all-wheel-drive system cope with a variety of surface conditions, off road or on.
Under the hood lives a 240-horsepower turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that can be a bit coarse at times, but still gives the Evoque a strong, peppy feeling once the turbo is spooled. The Evoque's relatively light weight and small dimensions help with the sense of sport and nimbleness.
Inside the Evoque, you'll find a compact crossover that makes the most of the available space, with a wide cargo and passenger area. The front seats offer plenty of room for most adults, and while the rear seats are a bit tighter, there's still room enough for friends, though entry to the rear seats can be tough in the three-door coupe models. The five-door variant eases this, but still carries the same amount of total cargo at nearly two dozen cubic feet of space.
For 2013, there are five variants of the five-door, and three variants of the coupe. Ranging in price from $41,995 to $52,595 for the five-door and $44,995 to $53,095 for the coupe, the primary differences are found in equipment levels, though subtle exterior cues will tip off knowledgeable fans. A new Pure trim is the entry-level Evoque for 2013, shaving about $2,000 off the previous year's base price.
Jumping up to the Prestige trim line brings 19-inch wheels, more premium leather throughout the interior, and genuine wood and metal finishes on the trim. The top-range Dynamic adds unique bumpers, side sills, a different grille, unique tailpipes, and its own 19-inch wheels. Contrasting colors for the roof and spoiler are also available, while the interior gets a darker sport-themed treatment with dashes of bright accent colors, and perforated leather seats.
- Snipped from sheets of awesome
- More space inside than seems possible
- Whizzy turbocharged power
- Lots of all-weather capability
- Flavors include spicy, trendy, prestigious
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