Review: 2019 Range Rover Evoque

13th March 2019
erin_baker_headshot.jpg Erin Baker

The Evoque is the car that saved Land Rover, make no mistake about it. With its smaller dimensions, and funky three-door version which spelt out its design focus, the first Evoque introduced more women, and more urban drivers, to the green-oval badge long loved by the welly brigade. It more or less created the compact SUV market, and this new model will surely tip global sales over the million mark.


The new Evoque is a welcome progression in every respect. The updated, thoughtful design and much improved interior materials and equipment levels prove this was never intended simply to be an entry-level Land Rover for those who couldn’t afford a Range Rover Sport or Disco Sport. Instead, it’s a class of car for the increasingly important customer who cares first and foremost about design, technology and sustainability, three words which used to be anathema to traditional petrolheads but, like it or not, are becoming the pedestals on which car sales are made or broken.


From the outside, the new Evoque takes on the family nose adopted by the Velar upwards, sleeker and rounder. But it’s inside where all the significant changes are. You can choose leather if you want to stay in the 20th century, but vegan millennials have moved on to wool (kvadrat) and textiles made with eucalyptus, which Land Rover is happy to provide.


The main dashboard and centre console have two clean, large screens showing all functions, which we first saw in the Velar. But the Evoque has its own fancy new stuff, too: the rear-view mirror uses “Clearsight” technology which means you flick a button and the whole glass transforms into a camera screen relaying the wide image from the rear of the car. It’s the best bit of tech I’ve seen in a car for at least a year: genuinely helpful as it gives you a much wider view of what’s behind, and pin sharp. Similarly, at the front, you can specify Ground View technology, which makes the bonnet invisible, showing you everything just in front of, and underneath, the bonnet. Cameras in the front grill and on the door mirrors project a view onto the top touchscreen in the dash.

Finally, the Evoque also offers Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. There’s also increased rear legroom and a larger boot, due to a slightly larger footprint. Our test car also featured the panoramic glass roof which is a welcome addition for a feeling of more light and space in this smaller model.


The petrol and diesel engines offered initially are the P200, P250 and P300 petrols (numbers denote horsepower) and D150 and D180 diesels. The D150 is offered with front-wheel-drive and a manual gearbox, the rest with all-wheel-drive and nine-speed automatic transmission.

They all get the company’s mild-hybrid system which uses regenerative braking to charge a battery and kicks in as you coast to a stop, bar the entry level model, and there’s a full plug-in hybrid version on the way.


The Evoque’s manners on road and off it have both improved. On road, the suspension is a huge improvement on the previous model, with a very compliant ride over big undulations and broken surfaces; the ride quality feels like it belongs to a car several price brackets above it.


Off-road, the car’s wading depth has increased by 10mm, to 600mm. It’s such a crying shame that almost no customer of the Evoque will take it off-roading: this may be a car which has had Victoria Beckham lean against it, but it’s still a Land Rover, first and foremost; it’ll take you over big rocks, up steep inclines and through rivers without a murmur, as we proved in Greece.

You’d have to take the petrol engine over the diesel, no matter how clean and frugal the diesel now is, simply because the government – bless it – won’t recognise the inherent worth of brand new diesel engines, and is intent on penalising diesel drivers.


Unlike the previous generation Evoque there will be no new three-door version, or convertible derivative. Still, this is among the finest of the smaller SUVs, especially with its excellent residuals. With a deposit of £7,000, you’d be looking at monthly payments of about £400-£440 for a mid-range Evoque, which isn’t bad going, especially for a car that can wade through rivers at pace.


Stat attack: Range Rover Evoque R Dynamic S P250

Price from: £37,150

Engine: 2.0-litre petrol mild-hybrid

Transmission: nine-speed automatic, front-wheel-drive (optional all-wheel-drive)

Power/torque: 249PS (246bhp) @ 5,500rpm/365Nm (270lb ft) @ 1,300-4,500rpm

0-62mph: 7.5 seconds

Top speed: 143mph

Kerb weight: 1,818kg

  • Review

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