LIVERPOOL-built, seriously cool and just named World Design Car of the Year, the honours keep rolling in for the Fab 4x4.
This latest honour is actually the 101st global gong to be scooped by the Range Rover Evoque – and it has only been on sale since last September.
That’s not only testament to the Evoque’s unique, low slung style and the expertise of the team working under Land Rover design director Gerry McGovern but also the skill and dedication of the Halewood workforce.
Evoque models come in five-door or the more elegant three-door Coupe body styles and the Echo has been putting a high spec version of the latter through its paces.
The next few weeks will see regular updates on how the baby Range Rover is faring and so far the vibes have all been positive, with no car we have tested short of exotica attracting more admiring glances.
While the Evoque range kicks off with the five-door eD4 Pure front-wheel drive model at £27,995, the tested version was an SD4 diesel all-wheel drive automatic in upmarket Dynamic trim at £39,990.
Engine choices are a 2.0-litre Si4 petrol plus a 2.2-litre SD4 diesel with 150 or 190ps and in three distinct design themes of Pure, with a contemporary feel, Prestige, which majors on luxury, and Dynamic for a more sporty character.
In a largely incident-free first month the Evoque suffered a puncture after driving over a nail on the Dock Road and endured the full bonnet, boot, cabin and mirror from underneath security search at the Grand National meeting’s Steeplechase car park.
We haven’t yet tested out the car’s off-road ability, which includes the Land Rover Terrain Response hardware that puts it in the same mud-plugging league as its big brother the Range Rover and stablemates like the Discovery and Freelander 2.
But it’s certainly a terrific car to drive in everyday conditions. The engine’s sweet with sufficient kick from the 190bhp engine to hit 62mph in 8.0 seconds, lots of poise and a balanced feel from the steering, both at speed and in urban conditions.
So far the Evoque’s average fuel consumption has been just above or below the 37 miles per gallon mark, under the 44mpg average but not bad for principally town driving.
Inside, the car looks and feels seriously classy with comprehensive standard Dynamic spec heightened further by a Lux pack that includes the likes of a full length panoramic sunroof, soft leather upholstery and a dual-view screen so a passenger can watch TV as the driver has the sat-nav on show.
The combination of cream and tan soft leather interior looks nice enough to eat, but may not prove too child friendly – as we’ll find out in the next update.
Range Rover Evoque Coupe SD4 Dynamic auto
Mechanical: 190bhp, 2,179cc, 4cyl diesel engine driving four wheels via six-speed automatic gearbox
Max speed: 121mph
0-62mph: 8.5 seconds
Combined mpg: 44.1
Insurance group: 38
CO2 emissions: 218g/km
BiK rating: 31%
Warranty: 3yrs/unlimited miles