London: The third-generation Range Rover Sport has been revealed to the world and it’s set to reach South Africa before the end of 2022.
Like its recently redesigned larger sibling, its new exterior design redefines the art of smoothness. No dramatic creases, no big grilles, just pure understated elegance.
Land Rover hasn’t gone into huge detail about the engines, but we are told that the South African line-up will include a six-cylinder plug-in hybrid variant that offers an all-electric range of up to 113km.
JLR’s conventional six-cylinder petrol and diesel Ingenium engines are also on the menu, and at the top of the range is a new BMW-sourced V8 twin-turbo petrol motor that produces 390kW. Expect the latter to sprint from 0-100km/h in 4.5 seconds with Dynamic Launch engaged.
For those occasions when you need to venture off the beaten track, the new Range Rover Sport comes with an Adaptive Off-Road Cruise Control system that helps drivers navigate tricky terrain by maintaining steady progress according to the ground conditions.
The Rangie’s redesigned cabin includes a 13.1-inch high-resolution ‘floating’ touchscreen infotainment system that learns its user’s habits and “intelligently personalises the onboard experience”, Land Rover says.
The electronics are powered by the company’s new Electrical Vehicle Architecture (EVA 2.0), which allows for over-the-air software updates for 63 electric modules.
Customers can also look forward to a new Meridian Signature Sound System, which is said to be the most advanced audio system ever fitted to a Range Rover Sport. It features up to 29 speakers, including four in the headrests that create “personal sound zones” for the occupants.
Most dynamic Range Rover ever
Also as per its bigger brother, the new Range Rover Sport is built around the company’s new flexible Modular Longitudinal Architecture (MLA-Flex) and it’s the first Range Rover to feature Dynamic Air Suspension with switchable volume air springs.
Depending on the package chosen, the Range Rover Sport is also available with all-wheel steering.
“Land Rover’s pioneering MLA-Flex architecture and the latest chassis systems come together to deliver the highest levels of dynamism we’ve ever seen on Range Rover Sport,” said JLR Executive Director Nick Collins.
“Integrated Chassis Control governs the comprehensive suite of innovations, co-ordinating everything from the latest switchable-volume air suspension system to our Dynamic Response Pro electronic active roll control. The result is the most engaging and thrilling Range Rover Sport ever.”
In an attempt to prove its dynamic prowess, Land Rover tasked James Bond stunt driver Jessica Hawkins to drive up a flooded dam spillway in Iceland. Having risked a deadly 90 metre drop at the base of the spillway, Jessica and the Range Rover SPort had to resist a surging torrent of water flowing down the ramp at a rate of 750 tonnes per minute.
Of course, the moment was captured on film and you can watch it below:
“The power of the water surging down the spillway was breath-taking from the side of the valley,” Jessica said.
“Driving into it knowing that a 90-metre drop was waiting behind me at the bottom of the slope, if things went wrong, made this the most challenging drive I’ve ever undertaken.
“Despite the steep slope and rushing water, new Range Rover Sport made it look easy. Its traction, composure and commanding visibility inspired so much confidence I was able to enjoy the whole experience.”