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It's not the most practical crossover SUV on Earth, but the 2013 Range Rover Evoque has a lot of style, refined driving manners and the traditional Land Rover off-road talents to make it a very appealing compact luxury crossover.
Stylish cabin; plenty of standard features; refined ride quality; punchy and efficient engine; available two-door body style.
Limited cargo space; less interior room than rivals; loaded base model equals hefty base price; Land Rover's questionable reliability history.
Available Range Rover Evoque SUV Models
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For 2013, the four-door model adds a less expensive entry-level trim; all models get a slightly revised grille, off-road guidance for the navigation system and an optional park-assist system.
Just like luxury sedans, the wide range of luxury compact crossovers follow a fairly safe and predictable script, particularly when it comes to exterior styling. But Land Rover's 2013 Range Rover Evoque definitely is the extrovert in a playground of mostly reserved playmates. The Evoque dares to go well beyond the luxury market's typical big-grille look to differentiate itself, but it's up to you to decide if you can live with the compromises its dramatic shape demands.
First, though, know that this smallest of Rover's models isn't totally about its looks. It immediately shouldered an "urban" SUV tag (with the not entirely desirable connotations that go with the definition) in Europe because it is offered in a front-wheel-drive variant that sort of thumbs its nose at Range Rover's heritage. In U.S. showrooms you'll find the Evoque fitted only with all-wheel drive and the fairly serious Terrain Response System that allows you to fine-tune the traction characteristics. Add in a responsive turbocharged four-cylinder engine and you're buying one of the more efficient yet capable small luxury crossovers around.
But back to style. The Evoque is the only model in the segment to offer a two-door hatchback body style in addition to the utility segment's standard four-door hatchback configuration. The two-door Coupe looks sharky and serious, though you might rightly question the ultimate utility of a "utility" vehicle with just a single door on each side. With the 2013 Land Rover Evoque, you also won't find the traditional hierarchy of trim levels -- Land Rover instead sells more or less one basic Evoque with "design themes" -- four for the four-door and three design themes for the two-door Coupe.
The Evoque's assertive styling means there's less interior space than in its boxier rivals. The 2013 Audi Q5, 2013 BMW X1 and X3 and the Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class all are good choices in their own right and typically offer broader utility, particularly over the Evoque Coupe. But for the way most people use a luxury crossover, the Evoque holds its own in terms of features, functionality and all-weather capability.
The 2013 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque is a small luxury crossover SUV available in four-door and two-door (Coupe) body styles. The four-door starts with a new basic but comprehensive trim level called "Pure." On top of that one can add the Pure Plus, Pure Premium, Dynamic and Prestige packages. The 2013 Evoque Coupe comes in Pure Plus, Pure Premium and Dynamic themes.
The four-door Evoque Pure comes standard with 19-inch wheels, front and rear foglights, automatic wipers, a rearview camera, front and rear parking sensors, a power liftgate, driver-selectable drive modes, dual-zone automatic climate control, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, power front seats (six-way driver, four-way passenger), partial leather upholstery, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, a touchscreen electronics interface and an 11-speaker sound system with a CD player, an auxiliary audio jack and two USB audio jacks. Pure Plus adds a panoramic sunroof and full leather upholstery.
The Pure Premium package adds adaptive xenon headlamps with automatic high beams, a blind-spot warning system, a 360-degree parking camera system, keyless ignition/entry, a navigation system with voice controls and a 17-speaker surround-sound audio system with a 10-CD changer.
The Dynamic package includes all Pure Premium equipment but features a sportier ambience with unique 19-inch wheels, different trim inside and out, a rear skid plate, different color choices and perforated leather. The Adaptive Dynamics package adds an adaptive suspension to the Dynamic package.
The Prestige (four-door only) is similar in concept to the Dynamic but features more luxurious design items. It also gets richer, more supple leather as well as additional front seat adjustments.
A Climate Comfort package consists of heating for the front seats, steering wheel, windshield washer jets and windshield. Other Evoque options include 20-inch wheels, satellite and HD radio, a rear-seat entertainment system and parallel parking assist.
Every 2013 Range Rover Evoque comes with a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that generates 240 horsepower and 250 pound-feet of torque. It drives all four wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission. EPA fuel economy estimates are respectable at 18 mpg city/28 mpg highway/22 mpg combined. In Edmunds performance testing, an Evoque went from zero to 60 mph in 7.4 seconds: a time that trails several rivals with more powerful engines.
Standard safety features on all 2013 Range Rover Evoques include antilock brakes, stability and traction control, trailer sway control, front side airbags and side curtain airbags. Also standard are parking sensors and a rearview camera.
In Edmunds brake testing, an Evoque Pure with 20-inch wheels and summer-rated tires came to a stop from 60 mph in 118 feet.
The 2013 Range Rover Evoque's emphasis on design extends to its interior, where rich, multitone combinations of leather, plastics and metal combine in the various design themes, resulting in a cabin that certainly has more flair than the standard designs found in most other luxury crossover interiors.
Visual interest centers on the "floating" center stack and the nifty rotary gear selector that has become an interior focal point for corporate cousin Jaguar. The standard 8-inch central touchscreen controls most infotainment and climate control functions and is easy enough to use, if sometimes slow to respond. The overall appearance of the dash, particularly the center stack and console, is classy but high-tech.
The Evoque's rear-sloping roof line is a stylist's dream but does backseat occupants' heads no favors, while the upward-sloping door sheet metal cuts down the rear windows' size, contributing to the cramped and claustrophobic impression most will feel in the rear. The sensation is further heightened in the Coupe. The Evoque's styling and packaging also affects cargo capacity. The maximum of 51 cubic feet (47.6 for the Coupe) of cargo space trails just about all competitors by a wide margin.
Extensive use of aluminum and other lightweight measures help the 2013 Range Rover Evoque to be one of the lightest models in its class, and the lack of weight contributes to a palpable nimbleness that one doesn't always get despite compact crossovers' comparatively modest size. The ride is sophisticated and beautifully executed, particularly with the adjustable suspension of the Dynamics package. Placing a four-cylinder engine in a Range Rover might seem like a recipe for epic slowness, but it's actually quite a punchy engine, with a pleasingly sporty rasp.
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