Land Rover’s Latest Hotcake, the Velar
Jaguar Land Rover has officially launched its latest offering and whilst Jaguar may be new to the luxury SUV game, its kissing cousin, Range Rover, is of course the brand that started the genre in the first place. All too fitting then that Range Rover has now plugged the gap in its line-up by giving us the all-new Velar, a proper mid-sized SUV that fits neatly between the Evoque and the Range Rover Sport.
The Velar most definitely shares a lot of its DNA with the Jaguar F-Pace and features the same chassis made out of a lot of exotic metal hybrids designed to reduce the overall weight of the vehicle. The bodywork and styling is Range Rover though, and what a stylo-milo it is. In fact, so much emphasis was placed on the level of styling that the launch was held at the London Design Museum with an orchestral accompaniment.
Massimo Fraschella, the head of the Velar exterior design team, said that they were attempting to take the Range Rover’s design DNA to a new level, and for sure the simplistic almost minimalist look to the new SUV – with flush door handles and ultra slim LED lights – seems to have achieved that. Inside, the car has eschewed all buttons on the dashboard and gone for a couple of rotary selectors (we used to call them dials) and two touchscreens with the rather natty name of Touch Pro Duo.
The list of all mod cons seems to be endless: the car is a 4G hotspot; the infotainment system can stream multiple high definition videos; it incorporates a route planner and even allows you to unlock your car with your phone. How cool is that? As standard are other features as well, such as a 360-degree camera, trailer-reverse assist and of course all of the autonomous driving aids that the pampered rich have become accustomed to having. Being related to the F-Pace means that we are sure to see the Velar come with the distinctly hairy-chested 380hp supercharged V6 that is capable of wafting the car to 100kph in a mere 5.3 seconds, which is of course impressive for a car that can also wade through 26 inches of water. All of the variants will also come with the famous Range Rover air-suspension, so ride quality will be luxurious as usual.
JLR had a massive sales year in 2016 and the Velar looks set to help them beat that in 2017. It doesn’t seem to be any secret either that the boys at Gaydon are looking across the channel and targeting the likes of Porsche and Mercedes with this latest offering. We think that Range Rover may give them a run for their money.
Oh, if you are wondering, Velar comes from Latin and means Sail or Veil…
Have a look at a promo video of the new car: