BUSINESS

[Behind the Wheel] Range Rover Velar, SUV built for dynamic urban driving

By Kim Bo-gyung
  • Published : Aug 27, 2017 - 17:03
  • Updated : Aug 28, 2017 - 17:35
Yeongjongdo, INCHEON -- Amid a worldwide sport utility vehicle boom, Jaguar Land Rover Korea, the local importer and distributor of Jaguar and Land Rover vehicles, is slated to add a fourth Range Rover SUV, dubbed Velar, to its lineup next month to offer one of its best on-road SUVs, the company said Sunday.
 
The Range Rover Velar on roads in Yongjong Island, Incheon (Jaguar Land Rover Korea)

The launch comes as Korean motorists’ demand for midsize SUVs has been on the rise.

Germany luxury BMW, for example, sold 1,936 units of the X5 midsize SUV here between January and July this year, up some 68 percent on-year, according to data compiled by the company.

Ahead of the official launch, members of the press had a chance to take the Range Rover Velar D240 out for a 137-kilometer ride from Jamwon-dong, southern Seoul, to Yongjeong Island, Incheon, last week. 

A side view of the Velar (Jaguar Land Rover Korea)

The fourth model to be rolled out by Range Rover, the high-end SUV brand under Jaguar Land Rover, Velar is positioned between the large-size SUV Range Rover Sport and compact SUV Range Rover Evoque.

Velar was built as the most dynamic SUV for on-roads, the company said.

Its noticeably short overhang in front allows outstanding handling, showing instant steering response when changing lanes and stopping at high speeds. A short overhang is used to cut down on a car’s weight and deliver nimble handling.
 
The light-emitting diode front display equipped of the Velar (Jaguar Land Rover Korea)

The official combined fuel economy of the Velar is 7.8 kilometers per liter, 7 kilometers per liter on city roads and 9.1 kilometers per liter on expressways, the company said.

The vehicle boasted impressive quietness and stability at high speeds of some 200 kilometers per hour on an expressway, while speeding up from standstill to 100 kilometers per hour in about seven seconds.

Powered by a twin-turbo 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, the vehicle has a maximum 240 horsepower with peak torque at 51 kilogram-force meters, the company said.

As for its exterior, its swept-back design delivered the voluptuous appearance of Range Rover SUVs.

Slim Matrix Laser light-emitting diode headlights and a coupe roofline were used to complete the design of the Velar. The conventional center console was replaced by a touch-screen display panel that was not very efficient due to a complicated process.

The Range Rover Velar will come in five trims: D240 S, D240 SE, D240 R-Dynamic SE, D300 R-Dynamic HSE and P380 R-Dynamic SE.

They will be priced between 98.5 million won ($87,470) and 116.1 million won.

The Korea Herald rating (out of 5 stars):
Design: 4 stars
Safety: 5 stars
Gas Mileage: 3 stars
Price: 4 stars
Overall: 16/20

By Kim Bo-kyung (lisakim425@heraldcorp.com)