There was a time, when owning a Range Rover, or Land Rover had one strict prerequisite, and it had nothing to do with green wellies or waxed jacket; you needed a gold plated bank account and a permanent towing hitch for the fuel bowser. They weren’t known for economy.
Of course, in this modern day and age, things are much better – manufacturers are doing all they can to lower emissions, raise economy, and prove their green credentials, which means that most of the big 4x4s are at least twice as good as they were just a few years ago when it comes to economy.
With that said, Jaguar Land Rover have gone even further – their new Discovery Sport, and Range Rover Evoque can now hit the dizzying heights of around 140mpg combined. That’s not a typo.
A plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) is a great introduction to electric vehicles, giving you most of the benefits of electric power, while avoiding the whole ‘range anxiety’ issue associated with them; at any point, you can switch back over to fossil fuel and carry on your journey without an issue.
But it isn’t just about deciding between electric or internal combustion – choosing to use both at the same time can give you an incredible boost in power, and in the case of the Disco or Evoque, that equates to just over 300hp – 200 horsepower coming from the 1.5 litre, 3-cylinder petrol engine, and a further 109hp coming from the electric motor.
Again, with the Evoque and Discovery, there’s another added bonus: the electric motor drives the rear wheels, so with both power sources running, you have full four-wheel drive. It’s also worth noting that the usual associated weight penalty of hybridisation doesn’t really apply with the two models – there’s no propshaft or differential, and the tiny three-cylinder engine is 37kg lighter than the stablemates four-cylinder variant, so although there is some extra weight, it’s not that noticeable.
Essentially, the underpinnings and drivetrain are the same for both models, so the main choice comes down to styling, although there some small differences as to how the vehicles drive – the Evoque feels slightly more agile, a little more taut, but without being too harsh, whereas the Discovery Sport is a softer ride, and has slightly more body roll when cornering.
When it comes to charging, the Evoque and Discovery can be charged from a domestic three-pin socket (an overnight charge), or through a 7kW wallbox (around 30 minutes for an 80% charge), or a public charger.
It’s good to know that the engineers have worked hard on the recharge through the braking system, and it uses ‘full blending’ to control the recuperation of power, with the full recharge going to the battery (under slowing down) until 0.2g of braking force is applied.
It’s easy to tell you that the Land Rover and Range Rover hybrids are everything, to every person, but the reality is that our professional team can advise you as to whether they really are suitable for your everyday needs, and you’re welcome to come and try them for yourself – get in touch today and see just what these magnificent PHEVs are like for YOU.