I’ll be the first to admit the Range Rover Evoque seems to have a certain stigma attached to it and I’m positive (despite looking particularly manly) that the Victoria Beckham Edition hasn’t helped those thoughts – how wrong we all were.
There’s absolutely no reason to believe the Evoque was ever going to be bad. Following the success of both the Sport and Vogue there was just no way Range Rover were going to deliver a dud. Of course it was going to have its critics, as all cars do, but in this case the people who criticized it the most all had one thing in common, they’d never been in it. Over the weekend we had the Evoque I took a lot of pleasure in telling people that the car, despite beliefs, was absolutely fantastic and that’s because it was.
Unfortunately our plans to increase the manliness of the Evoque by taking it on a camping trip were foiled by the incessant rain but by Sunday night we’d come to the conclusion that the car was perfectly fine the way it was. The Evoque comes in either a two or four door variant with a choice of three finishes, Pure, Dynamic and Bold. My understanding is that you can pair any of these styling packages with any engine you desire and for the weekend we had a Pure Si4 Coupe in white. The Si4 is the top of the line engine, a more than capable 2.0 litre turbo charged beauty producing 177kw. On the other hand the Pure styling package is the bottom of the range and I found that very hard to believe, wondering how much better it could have been!
Inside, the Evoque is pretty faultless, as I said I’m not sure how much better it could have been. The media system is by far the best I’ve used in any car. Connecting my phone via Bluetooth took 20 seconds and the controls were arranged perfectly on both the dash and the steering wheel. I also loved the fact that the car won’t allow you to play with the navigation system whilst driving, I tend to be rather impatient with things like that but the Evoque left me no choice but to wait until I was stopped safely. The seating arrangement in our car was a strict four seater, well thought out with an electronic function to slide the seat forward when accessing the rear seats. I have to admit it was rather pleasant sitting in the back offering plenty of room and a secure feel tucked away behind the dark tinted windows.
For me the real winner in the car was the sound system. Being an avid hifi fan for a number of years the first thing I noticed when I climbed into the Evoque was the name Meridian on the speakers. Meridian have only recently made a move into car audio however have done so with international acclaim. I read a review yesterday where one enthusiast described the Evoque as a free car you get with a $60,000 sound system! Whilst it may be a tad overzealous, I know where he’s coming from. The standard 380 watt 11 speaker system is phenomenal, a true testament to the engineers at Meridian who played a major role in the design of the car’s cabin ensuring each speaker was placed specifically to optimize the best sound possible. Finally, if you’re a true hifi fanatic, there’s also the option to upgrade the system to an 825 watt 18 speaker setup.
Before concluding, I’ve got to touch on the engine. The 177kw turbo charged four-cylinder engine is a treat. Whilst it has the capacity to summon some serious power in its normal ‘Drive’ mode I found the car far more responsive and enjoyable in Sport and had a great time putting it through its paces down McCarrs Creek Rd from Terry Hills into Bayview. All in all the Range Rover Evoque is a very tasty package and a car you could get very comfortable with very quickly. What you’ll notice quickly is that it surprises everyone who rides in it, which is exactly what you want in a new car. It’s lovely inside, it has a world-class sound system, it’s quick and it looks good. A perfect combination for the man about town.