Range Rover Sport Review | Motors.co.uk

Find out more about the Land Rover Range Rover Sport in the latest Motors.co.uk Review

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4
Out of 5

Pros

  • Excellent drive
  • Upmarket interior
  • Wide range of abilities

Cons

  • Expensive to buy
  • Expensive to run
  • Infotainment systems outdated
  • MPG

    22 - 91

  • CO2

    69 - 290 g/km

Review

When Land Rover introduced the original Range Rover Sport back in 2005, it did so in the hope of providing customers with a more accessible version of its flagship Range Rover model.

Not only was the Sport more affordable than the Range Rover, but it was also more performance-orientated, meaning it was set to clash heads with the likes of the Porsche Cayman and BMW X5.

With a new and improved second-generation model introduced in 2013, Land Rover hoped to build on the original Range Rover Sport’s phenomenal success.

Latest model

The current Range Rover Sport represented a fairly significant change when compared with the earlier model. While the first-generation SUV was based on the same platform as the Land Rover Discovery of the time – which was incredibly heavy – the new Sport benefited from an all-aluminium body, making it dramatically lighter as a result.

From a design point of view, the latest Range Rover Sport is far sleeker-looking than the rather boxy first-generation model. The front end bares the design language common to all current Range Rover models, including the new Velar.

As a first in the Range Rover line-up, the Sport is available with an optional third row of seats, meaning that it is capable of transporting as many as seven people. While these seats are a bit too small for adults to sit in comfortably over long distances, parents will no doubt find them perfect for the school run.

In 2015, the Range Rover Sport SVR was introduced. This is a high-performance version of the luxury SUV, and features a 542bhp, 5.0-litre V8 that can take the vehicle from a standstill to 60mph in a staggering 4.5 seconds.

As you should expect from an upmarket SUV such as this, prices aren’t cheap. The entry-level model starts at £59,700 and moves up to a base price of £96,900 for the SVR.

Value for money

 

While the Range Rover Sport is by no means a cheap car to purchase, you do get a lot of kit as standard for your money, as well as a huge deal of badge prestige.

 

Not only is the Range Rover Sport an incredibly good looking car from the outside, its interior is also luxurious, even on entry-level models. All materials used in the cabin are top quality, with plenty of leather and polished metal really helping to lift the premium feel of the interior.

 

As far as prices go, a base-specification HSE model starts off at a considerable £59,700. However, this does include standard features such as 20-inch alloys, Xenon headlight, seats upholstered in Oxford leather, satellite navigation and front and rear parking sensors – so you do feel like you are getting value for your money.

On the used market, the equivalent model with the more desirable 3.0-litre V6 diesel engine currently retail for around £45,000. As they are still relatively new cars, these might represent a smarter choice for those not hugely fussed about buying from new.

 

Looks and image

While looks are always going to be subjective, it would be difficult to say that the Range Rover Sport was an unattractive car. It is a continuation of the design language first introduced on the current-generation Range Rover, which is now also seen on the smaller Velar and Evoque models.

While the original Sport was quite a square and boxy-looking car, the current model is far more refined in its design, and looks all the more like a premium offering for it. Thanks to its combination of handsome looks and excellent off-road ability, the Range Rover Sport is a vehicle that is just as at home on the streets of London as it would be navigating a muddy field.

The cabin is just as luxurious as you might expect from a car as expensive as this, and is one of the Range Rover Sport’s most attractive features.

Leather upholstery, and smart switchgear really help to lift the cabin, although one complaint is that the actual on-board infotainment technology doesn’t seem as up-to-date as its steep price tag suggests it should be.

Space and practicality

There’s no way around it really, the Range Rover Sport is a big car. Climbing into the cabin does require a bit of effort, although its air suspension can lower the ride height by 50mm to help make getting in slightly easier.

Headroom is abundant throughout the cabin, as is legroom. Passengers in the middle row will find the seats supportive and comfortable over longer journeys, although the same can’t necessarily be said of the middle seat. Those customers who specify the optional third row of seats will find them ideal for transporting children on the school run, although they aren’t exactly ideal over long journeys.

As far as boot space goes, the Range Rover Sport offers a considerable 784 litres worth of storage space in five-seat guise, although this drops by a significant amount if the optional third-row seats are specified. With the middle row of seats folded flat, boot space is extended to 1,761 litres.

Engines

The Range Rover Sport is available with a total of seven different engine configurations, with three diesel options, three petrol options and a hybrid.

As far as diesel engines go, the entry-level offering is a 2.0-litre, four-cylinder unit that produces 237bhp and a combined fuel economy figure of 45.6mpg, while CO2 emissions stand at 164g/km.

Next is the 3.0-litre V6 diesel, which is the engine to go for in the range. This develops 302bhp, while managing fuel consumption figures of 40.4mpg and CO2 emissions of 185g/km. This engine is also available as a hybrid, which improves fuel economy to 45.6mpg, while CO2 emissions drop to 164g/km.

Crowning the diesel line-up is a 4.4-litre V8. This produces 334bhp, while fuel consumption drops to 33.6mpg. CO2 emissions rise to 219g/km.

The entry-level petrol engine is a supercharged 3.0-litre V6 that develops 335bhp. Fuel consumption isn’t as impressive as its diesel stablemates, standing at 26.9mpg. As far as emissions go, it produces 243 grams of CO2 per kilometre.

Crowning the Range Rover Sport petrol engine line-up is the supercharged 5.0-litre V8. This produces 503bhp in standard guise, and 543bhp in the SVR model. This is obviously the least-economical engine in the range, with the SVR variant managing just 21.7mpg and CO2 emissions of 298g/km.

Running costs

Regardless of the engine you choose, the Range Rover Sport isn’t exactly going to be a cheap car to run – thanks in large part to its rather gigantic size. Due to the rather wide range of engines, as well as the availability of the high-performance SVR model, running costs will vary considerably.

Those after out-and-out fuel economy will likely find the entry-level four-cylinder diesel engine the most attractive option. While it achieves the same 45.6mpg fuel economy figure as the V6 hybrid, it is £15,500 cheaper to buy, which makes the marginal gains in fuel economy difficult to justify.

At the other end of the scale is the blistering Range Rover Sport SVR. This will cost a considerable amount of money to keep topped up with fuel, considering the fact that Land Rover claims it can only manage a combined fuel economy figure of 21.7mpg.

Because of their high CO2 emissions, the Range Rover Sport line-up is also going to be expensive in terms of VED. At present, the popular 3.0-litre V6 diesel model costs £355 in tax for the first year of ownership, and £230 each subsequent year.

From April 1 2017, this will change to £800 for the first year, and £140 each subsequent year. As this model costs more than £40,000 to buy, it will also be liable for an additional £310 annual supplement fo the first five years of ownership.

Things to look out for

The first-generation Range Rover Sport wasn’t renowned for its reliability, although the latest model has set out to change this.

Owners have reported that this new version doesn’t seem to be affected by the reliability issues that plagued older models. That said, a recall was issued in January 2015 concerning a possible loss of braking efficiency in vehicles produced from August 2012 to January 2014. A separate recall was issued for SDV6 models in October 2013 over fire concerns.

Rivals

 

The Range Rover Sport isn’t short of competition in the luxury SUV sector of the market, going up against the likes of the BMW X5, Porsche Cayenne, and Mercedes-Benz GLE.

While all of these models might certainly be able to match the Range Rover Sport in terms of interior quality, performance and on-road driving characteristics, they simply cannot hold a candle to it when it comes to off-road capabilities.

While looks are of course, subjective, to many the Range Rover is also the far better looking option, and with the possible exception of the Porsche, also has the most badge appeal.

Depreciation warning

Thanks to its high levels of desirability, prices for the Range Rover Sport remain fairly high on the used market.

More sensible variations such as the 3.0-litre V6 diesel hold their value the best, while the more specialist iterations such as the SVR tend to not perform quite as well.

Which Range Rover Sport to Pick

Cheapest to Buy When New

2.0 P300 HSE 5dr Auto

Most MPG

2.0 P400e HSE 5dr Auto

Fastest Model (0-60)

5.0 P575 S/C SVR 5dr Auto

Trims Explained

There are four levels of trim available on the Range Rover Sport: HSE, HSE Dynamic, Autobiography Dynamic and SVR.

HSE

The entry-level HSE includes standard features such as 20-inch alloys, Xenon headlights, satellite navigation, keyless entry, front and rear parking sensors and leather upholstery. It is also the only specification available with the 2.0-litre diesel engine.

The HSE model starts at £59,700.

HSE Dynamic

Next is the HSE Dynamic, which costs from £64,000.

This adds features such as red Brembo brake calipers, black-coloured details on the exterior, 21-inch alloys, stainless steel sports pedals and the Terrain Response 2 Dynamic Program.

Autobiography Dynamic

Autobiography Dynamic models benefit from an uprated Meridian surround sound system, 22-inch alloys and a panoramic roof.

Prices start at £80,300.

Sport SVR

Crowning the range is the Range Rover Sport SVR. Not only does this benefit from the improved performance of the tuned 5.0-litre V8 engine, it also gains aesthetic changes such as darkened headlights, unique 22-inch alloys, a rear spoiler, quad tailpipes and sports seats upholstered in Oxford leather.

This model costs from £96,900.

Summary

  1. Range Rover Sport combines luxury with genuine off-road capability
  2. Wide range of diesel and petrol engines available
  3. Expensive entry-level asking price
  4. Range Rover Sport SVR is the high-performance model
  5. Available with an optional third row of seats
  6. While interior quality might be outstanding, on-board technology is rather outdated
  7. Not many rivals carry more badge appeal
  8. Hybrid diesel is expensive and doesn’t offer much in the way of improved economy
  9. Holds its value well on the used market
  10. Second-generation model far more reliable than first-generation

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