2013 Land Rover Range Rover Safety

8.0
Safety

The Range Rover's entirely new body structure and raft of safety gear is promising, but data is absent.

Neither the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) nor the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has crash-tested the new Range Rover, and frankly we'd be surprised if either one did, given its expected sales volume and base price.

No crash scores are in, but the Range Rover has a body like a Boeing, and enough electronics for one, too.

Still, we're assigning a high safety score, based as much on the Range Rover's aircraft-style aluminum body structure as its long list of safety technology, from the standard airbags and traction control, to its standard four-wheel drive with selectable traction modes, to hill-descent control and hill-start assist, to its available locking rear differential and adaptive headlights. On supercharged models, the traction system predicts the terrain ahead and selects its own mode--pretty nifty.

The Range Rover also has a standard surround-view camera that provides a "kerb-side" view down the car, thanks to cameras at the front corners and under the big sideview mirror housings. It also has standard Bluetooth with voice control of some vehicle functions.

There's also the latest in electronic assistance, including adaptive cruise control that can slow the Range Rover to a complete stop in traffic, and then accelerate again with a slight tap on the gas. Blind-spot monitors incorporate cross-traffic alerts--useful for backing out of parking spaces. For towing, the Range Rover has sight lines in its surround camera that help in positioning, and trailer-sway control factored into its stability systems.

Overall, visibility is excellent from the driver seat. The driving position is ideal, and the new look has slim roof pillars that leave the rear-quarter view almost unfettered, though the back glass can seem a little small.

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