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2020 Land Rover Range Rover

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2020
The Car Connection
2020
The Car Connection

The Car Connection Expert Review

Anthony Sophinos Anthony Sophinos Contributor
February 25, 2020

Buying tip

The mid-level HSE does the best job of balancing prudence with extravagance; we'd pass on the hybrid drivetrains, though the diesel has its appeal.

features & specs

Automaticbiography LWB
Automaticbiography SWB
HSE SWB
MPG
16 city / 21 hwy
MPG
16 city / 21 hwy
MPG
19 city / 25 hwy
MSRP
$150,300
MSRP
$143,800
MSRP
$96,150

The Range Rover may have lost the crown of most expensive SUV to Bentley and Rolls-Royce, but it still sets the bar for style and class.

The 2020 Land Rover Range Rover is the latest in a long line of icons. Its styling has evolved at about the pace of rhinos, alligators, and the Porsche 911. That could be seen as a criticism when applied to other cars, but it’s not the case here—the Range Rover aesthetic has been near-perfect since its debut in 1972.

The lure is more than style, though. The 2020 Land Rover Range Rover also has go-anywhere capability and enough Old World in the interior to satisfy any royal family, even yours. With the right powertrain, it'll get you where you're going with effortless haste.

There aren’t many vehicles we test that are so well-rounded, which is why we've given it one of our highest ratings at 7.8 out of 10 overall. (Read more about how we rate cars.)

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The interior in the Range Rover speaks of taste and restraint. It isn't flashy, but it is exceedingly well done, a tasteful selection of color and material thoughtfully arranged with high-society style. Two screens simplify the center console and further pare down the minimalistic trappings, but the sleek interface comes with a steep learning curve. Standard equipment is plentiful but if you want more goodies just take a peek at the options sheet. Choices range from upholstery upgrades to custom paint shades.

Where Range Rover doesn't show restraint is under the hood. There's a goody bag of powertrains available, including Land Rover's excellent 5.0 V-8. Other choices include a turbodiesel and a plug-in hybrid. Whatever your preferred choice of combustion may be, it's likely available for the Range Rover.

You can't talk about a Range Rover without mentioning its impressive off-road chops. Yes, the only dirt most of these see is the gossip owners share with their passengers. But Range Rover hasn't forgotten its roots, and massive capability is present and accounted for even on base models. Full-time four-wheel drive is standard, as are multiple drive modes for various conditions. Optional equipment includes a trail-speed cruise control, electronically locking differentials, and other tech-based solutions to the age-old problem of impassable terrain. Opt for all of it and the resulting tab will be a big one—but you'll be able to go anywhere with ease.

9

2020 Land Rover Range Rover

Styling

Dapper duds that only seem to look better with each passing year is the hallmark of the stately and definitive Range Rover.

As any purveyor of fine goods will tell you, timeless style is one of the imminent attributes of high quality. The Range Rover’s exclusive, instantly recognizable style earns it a 9 out of 10 on our scale.

Fifty years in, the public is still enamored with the shape, and so are we.  Land Rover has walked the line between heritage and progress better than most, thanks to a focus on the elemental rather than the glitzy jewelry. There's not a single excess detail on the flanks or fascias of the Range Rover. The look is all in the restraint.

It comes off as blocky and angular, but the designers have weaved in subtle curves and flowing shapes to give this upright Range Rover the premise of motion and flow. The subtle downward-sloping roofline, trim sides, and even the shape and look of the LED headlights and taillights all help turn this big brick into the quintessential British SUV.

The interior continues the pared-down theme. A horizontally oriented dashboard eschews glitter and detail for a simplified, almost Scandinavian look. Dual 10.0-inch touchscreens that dominate the center stack. The upper screen is for infotainment; the lower for climate and traction modes. Move away from the screens and you'll find plenty of real wood trim and supple leather surfaces. The whole effect is pleasing, serene, and elegant.

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9

2020 Land Rover Range Rover

Performance

The breadth of engine choices along with off-road competence make the Range Rover a force to be reckoned with.

Aside from its design, the Range Rover's greatest asset lies in its bandwidth of performance. On road, it's an S-Class with four-wheel drive. Off road it's a Wrangler Rubicon. Few other SUVs are as versatile without compromise, and that earns it a 9 out of 10.

Under the hood, things start off with a 3.0-liter supercharged V-6 with 355 or 395 horsepower, depending on trim. Torque is the same across the board at 332 pound-feet of torque. For a truck weighing nearly two-and-a-half tons, this supercharged V-6 moves the Range Rover with authority.

The turbodiesel V-6 also displaces 3.0 liters; it’s rated at 254 hp but the torque measures out to a stomping 443 lb-ft. That's enough grunt to move the Range Rover to 60 mph from a standstill in 7.5 seconds and let it hit a top speed of 130 mph. These numbers nearly match those of the gas V-6—but the gas engine has no hope of matching the diesel's excellent fuel economy.

The newest powertrain to join the fray is a gas-electric hybrid. This engine mates a 2.0-liter turbo-4 to a 114-hp electric motor that sips its juice from a 13.1-kwh lithium-ion battery. The combo is good for 398 total horsepower—a good bit more than the 2.0-liter normally makes when it's not augmented by electricity. That electron boost also gives it a 6.4-second 0-60 mph time, a good showing for a heavy hybrid.

Of course, the best performance is found in the most audacious of the engine choices: the 5.0-liter V-8 used in the top trims. This supercharged engine checks in at 518 hp and 461 lb-ft of torque, which allows sub-five-second 0-60 mph sprints. Upgrade to the SVAutobiography models and power rises to 557 hp and 516 lb-ft, but mysteriously enough the 0-60 mph time doesn't change.

Driving impressions—on-road and off-road

For such a big vehicle, the Range Rover is grippy, tenacious, and has a steering rack that's filled with precise feedback—it's hard to call it fun, but it is certainly more rewarding to pilot than something like a Tahoe.

The air suspension cushions things nicely; we'll say again how the Range Rover rides like a luxury sedan. It quells any unwanted harshness from the broken pavement below. It can adjust ride height up to 10.2 inches up front and more than a foot in the back.

You'll be happy to have that kind of suspension travel when you take the Rover into the backcountry. The variety of off-road modes—up to six, when you buy the right options—calibrates the throttle, steering, suspension, and more for a particular terrain. Helpful aids like a trail-speed cruise control and hill descent control are on the options sheet as well.

Buy all the right equipment and the Range Rover will tackle steep grades and impossible-looking terrain. It will also ford nearly three feet of water—even the hybrid model. An optional wade-sensing feature can alert drivers when they're getting close to that limit, but we can't imagine the usual clientele will ever need it.

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10

2020 Land Rover Range Rover

Comfort & Quality

The Range Rover lacks for nothing in regards to quality appointments.

Luxury SUVs have adopted kingly appointments in their arms race, but none can match the Range Rover for its quiet, regal elegance that's apparent inside and out. As such it earns a perfect 10 for comfort and quality.

It all starts up front, where room abounds in every direction and the wide, cosseting seats are just about perfect. The front seats can be adjusted in myriad ways and if you pay enough money they'll also heat, cool, and even massage your backside.

Back seats are no less accommodating; with Range Rover, there's no such thing as steerage. The rear bench offers power recline for the outboard passengers, and, like the fronts, there's also the option to upgrade to heated, cooled, and massaged seats.

The Autobiography goes a step further with its optional Executive Seating Package. Not only do you get multi-way power-adjustable rear seats, there's also eight-way headrest adjustment and a smartphone app to commandeer the car's climate control, for those moments when the chauffeur gets overzealous with the air conditioning.

If you're worried about leg room, don't be. Both long and short wheelbases are offered, with the long-wheelbase model adding 7.3 inches of legroom to the rear seat. Opting for the extended-length version takes legroom from just average to limo-like.

The cargo area is also plenty spacious, with the standard-length models offering 31.5 cubic feet of cargo space behind the second row. Models with the executive seating make do with 24.5 cubic feet behind the rear seats. The most spacious of them all is the long-wheelbase model; fold down the rear seats and there's 75 cubic feet to do with as you will. In all models, the load height is a bit high, even for an SUV. But engage the lowering mode and the air suspension will graciously lower the Range Rover to aid loading.

Overall, the new SUVs from Rolls-Royce and Bentley outshine the Range Rover's interior in terms of glamour and glitz; if you want a dashboard that looks like Hollywood boulevard, you'll need one of those two. But the abundant leather and wood found in the Range Rover do a fine job of channeling London's Reform Cub. The finely appointed, understated space has its own kind of charm that isn't any less luxurious than the Rolls or Bentley—just different. The luxury of it—even if it lacks flash—is partly why we gave the Range Rover a perfect score.

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2020 Land Rover Range Rover

Safety

Without any crash-test data, we can't issue the Range Rover a rating for safety.

Sometimes the IIHS and NHTSA don't get a chance to test certain vehicles. The current Range Rover happens to be one of those vehicles. Due to this we can't issue it a rating for safety.

As for driver-assist features, the Range Rover offers all the major big-ticket items—you'll just have to pay for the choicier bits. Standard on all models is automatic emergency braking, active lane control, and parking sensors. Standard hill-descent control keeps you from unintentionally barreling down a trail. If you want blind-spot monitors and adaptive cruise control, pay extra or opt for an HSE or better trim.

Other features that are optional on most trims include a head-up display, a surround-view camera system, and active park assist.

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8

2020 Land Rover Range Rover

Features

With plenty of optional and standard features on the menu, the Range Rover's equipment list should satisfy even the most discerning luxury buyers.

Befitting a luxury SUV costing nearly six figures, the Range Rover indulges its passengers. Base equipment levels are excellent and the list of standard equipment only gets more lavish the higher up you go in the trim hierarchy. We give it an 8 out of 10 for its lengthy list of features.

Base models—known only as Range Rovers—begin at $92,195 and come with 19-inch wheels, a terrain response management system, a panoramic roof, 16-way heated front seats, and a power tailgate. Leather upholstery is standard, as is a pair of 10.0-inch touchscreens, with one controlling infotainment and the other the tri-zone climate system. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility has been made standard for 2020.

Moving into the $97,445 HSE brings about softer leather, heated seats in the rear, and a surround-view camera system. If you're a baller on a budget, the HSE is about as far up the chain as you'll want to go, as from here things get pricey quick.

The Autobiography justifies its $107,245 price tag with semi-aniline leather, standard executive seating package, and a premium 1,700-watt Meridian sound system, not to mention the many bespoke trim and paint options. The V-8 is the only engine choice at this point. The $179,795 SVAutobiography ups the power even more for those particularly eager to burn both gas and rubber in copious quantities. It also adds 24-way heated and cooled and massaging seats, quilted leather, and performance suspension tuning.

Land Rover has opted to integrate nearly all comfort and convenience functions into two 10.0-inch screens. The move streamlines the look of the interior, but it's reasonable to be apprehensive about the intuitiveness of such a setup.

Luckily, it's not as bad as it sounds. The system is leagues better than the dual-screen systems used by Acura and Infiniti. We found it quick to respond to inputs, and all the major controls don't require to drill down more than one or two layers. It feels like a smartphone thanks to its swipe-and-touch interface, though there is a learning curve that will need to be overcome. But Range Rover could have done a lot worse than this.

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3

2020 Land Rover Range Rover

Fuel Economy

Surprise, surprise: the luxury SUV sacrifices mileage for performance.

Despite both a turbodiesel and plug-in on the powertrain menu, the Range Rover is no miser on gasoline—you'll be pumping a lot of premium during ownership. Its penchant for fuel earns it a 3 out of 10 on our scale.

Driving this rating is the most popular engine, the 3.0-liter gasoline V-6. At 17 mpg city, 23 highway, 19 combined, it's hardly noteworthy. It's much the same with the potent but thirsty V-8, which gets a rating of 16/21/18 mpg in its thriftiest form and just 13/19/15 mpg in its worst.

Turbodiesel models, on the other hand, are rated for 22/28/24 mpg, which is a commendable achievement for this size of SUV. The plug-in hybrid is good for 42 mpg combined; it'll also go an EPA-estimated 19 miles on electricity alone.

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$90,900
MSRP based on SWB
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7.8
Overall
Expert Rating
Rating breakdown on a scale of 1 to 10?
Styling 9
Performance 9
Comfort & Quality 10
Safety N/A
Features 8
Fuel Economy 3
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