PRETORIA - Land Rover’s mid-sized Range Rover Velar has always been more regal than racy, but that changes with the launch of the new SVAutobiography Dynamic Edition flagship model in South Africa.

That’s a really long name, but even longer is its brag sheet. But apart from the unique styling package and cabin features, the big news here is that it inherits the 5-litre supercharged V8 petrol engine from its larger siblings. Good for 405kW and 680Nm, the SVAutobiography will hurtle you from 0-100km/h in just 4.5 seconds, according to Land Rover, and on to a top speed of 274km/h.

But there’s far more than just a heart transplant going on here - engineers at Land Rover’s Special Vehicle Operations performance division have worked their magic on the air suspension, all-wheel-drive system, Active Rear Locking Differential, eight-speed automatic gearbox, exhaust and steering. 

With all that fury, the SVAutobiography is in no mood to blend in with the rest of the Velar family, and so it’s set apart by a unique styling package that includes a redesigned bumper with larger air intakes, new grille and revised rear bumper, which incorporates quad exhaust finishers.

Filling its wheel arches are a set of 21-inch alloy wheels, although customers can also opt for 22” rims featuring either a dark grey or ‘silver sparkle’ finish, the latter also featuring diamond-turned edging. The edition is also available with an exclusive colour called Satin Byron Blue, but if that’s not up your alley, Land Rover also offers five other options in the form of Firenze Red, Santorini Black, Eiger Grey, Fuji White and Indus Silver.

On the inside, the SVAutobiography distinguishes itself with a unique sports steering wheel and a knurled finish on the rotary gear selector. The seats are upholstered in twin-stitched, quilted Windsor leather, with the front chairs being 20-way adjustable as well as heated and cooled and featuring a massage function. The command centre, as per other modern Range Rovers, is the Touch Pro Duo infotainment system that features two vertically stacked centre screens.

Also standard is four-zone climate control, adaptive cruise control, 360-degree parking aid and a 17-speaker, 825W Meridian Surround Sound System.

There is a certain degree of exclusivity promised here too, as the Velar SVAutobiography Dynamic Edition will only be available for one year. 

It’s currently priced at R1 743 325.

IOL Motoring