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New York Motor Show 2013: Range Rover Sport

Sleek new looks for the middle Rangey...

Land Rover has revealed the all-new Range Rover Sport at a special event in Manhattan, ahead of the New York Motor Show reveal.

With a sleek new look, the new Sport is sure to win many fans and bring new customers to the already healthy Jaguar Land Rover brand. Described by Land Rover design boss Gerry McGovern as being “the Porsche 911 of SUVs”, it’s his way of emphasising the essential difference between the all-new Sport and the recently launched, considerably larger Range Rover flagship  which shares many of the Sport’s underpinnings but not its essential character. “We’ve taken ride, handling and agility to another level in the Sport,” adds brand boss John Edwards. “This is the fastest, most agile and most responsive Land Rover ever.”

With a look much closer to the Evoque than the larger Range Rover, the new Sport certainly lives up to its name in the styling department. The front end has similar headlights  to the large RR, but marries them to Evoque-style lower bumper vents for a classy yet sporty look. The side vents get a makeover with a slick new swept back look. The rear has a pinched look with a faux diffuser and minimalist look which is certain to divide opinion. Helping the look are new alloy wheel designs up to 22” in diameter. The interior gets a look much like the new big RR with reduced button clutter and a cleaner design.

The new Range Rover Sport takes the new chassis and body tech seen in the bigger RR and applies it to help with a model-for-model 420 kg weight reduction. This is despite the new Sport having a very useful third row of occasional seats that can flip up making this a serious choice for families now.

At launch, the Sport will be offered with a choice of two engines: a 288bhp 3.0 SDV6 diesel and a 503bhp supercharged 5.0-litre petrol V8. These will be joined next year by a 254bhp TDV6 diesel and a 334bhp 4.4-litre SDV8 ‘super-diesel’ with a 6.5sec 0-60mph time. Later in 2014 we’ll see a turbocharged 2.0-litre petrol engine option though we can’t see that being too popular.

These engines (all of which incorporate stop-start) send their power through an eight-speed ZF automatic gearbox to a permanent 4x4 system. But in a big break with the past, the Sport will be offered either with a two-speed transfer case that offers the traditional high range and low range and a 50/50 front/rear torque split, or a single-speed transfer case with a default 42/58 per cent torque split to give a rear-drive bias for sharper on-road handling.

At launch, the SDV6 will cost between £59,995 and £74,995, but the TDV6 will reduce the Range Rover Sport’s entry price to around £51,550 when it arrives next year. The Supercharged Autobiography, with its 5.0-litre V8 tops the range priced at £81,550.

Images and video courtesy of Land Rover

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About Tim Oldland

Contributing Editor - Long time petrolhead, automotive design engineer and journalist. Also Social Media Manager for the ecurie25 Group - www.ecurie25.com Tim has worked in the automotive sector for many years, but has been a fan of anything with 2 or 4... read more