In days gone by, Range Rovers had a certain reputation – they could drive anywhere, ford the deepest stream, climb the highest mountain; the only thing they struggled with was passing a petrol station.
Big V8 engine, hundreds of horsepower, and solid construction meant that fuel economy wasn’t exactly at the top of the priority list. To be fair to Range Rover, they weren’t the only manufacturer to accept that low mpg figures were the trade-off for such a vehicle, they just happened to be the best. (And still are).
Today’s world is different. Gas Guzzlers are done, two hundred horsepower from a V8 engine would beg the question “what’s wrong with it?”, and electricity is the here and now, the zeitgeist.
The 1.5 litre three-cylinder petrol engine fitted to the Evoque P300e makes 197 horsepower. That’s less than half the size of the original Rover V8 engine, and five cylinders short, and yet it still makes more power, considerably more.
Add in a 107-horsepower electric motor, using a 15kWh battery, and you have a Range Rover that’s capable of returning a WLTP range of up to 143.1mpg. 34 miles of that could be totally emission free. Better still, along with the combined 304hp, there’s a huge 540Nm of torque available. You could tow a small county with that. (Although the Evoque does have a maximum towing weight of 1,600Kg).
The electric motor (driving the rear wheels) is ideal for driving around the city, giving brisk acceleration, and can cope with speeds of up to 84mph before the petrol engine kicks in. O-60mph can be reached in just 6.1 seconds.
The Evoque PHEV (Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle) is available from the ‘S’ trim level upwards, which means that standard equipment for the P300e is good – leather seats (heated upfront), a 10-inch Pivi Pro infotainment system, LED headlights, 18-inch alloys, and a 3D surround camera system with front and rear parking aids.
Step up to the HSE and you can also have a powered gesture tailgate, ClearSight rear view mirror, Auto High Beam Assist (AHBA), Clear Exit Monitor, Rear Traffic Monitor, and adaptive cruise control, among other things.
You may think that the Evoque has lost some of its off-roadability, but all of the hybrid Evoques have Wade Sensing, a system that uses ultrasonic sensors in the door mirrors that alert the driver if the water approaches the 600mm wading depth, relaying the information to the touchscreen system.
Plus, it has a 212mm off-road ride height, and an approach angle of 25-degrees, with a departure angle of 30.6-degrees – this very definitely is a Range Rover that can … rove ranges?
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The Evoque PHEV has lost nothing of its Range Rover-ness due to the addition of a smaller petrol engine and electric motor, in fact in anything, the silent running on electric-only power just adds to the sensation of luxury motoring, which is what Range Rover is all about.
To sample the P300e for yourself, contact one of our friendly professionals, and they’ll be able to make that happen for you.