Used 2015 Land Rover Range Rover Review
Edmunds expert review
If you're looking for the pinnacle of full-size SUV luxury, you'll find it in the 2015 Land Rover Range Rover.
What's new for 2015
For prestige and luxury in the SUV segment, it doesn't get any better than the 2015 Land Rover Range Rover. Why? First of all, there's the perpetually fashionable styling, with simple, regal lines that also easily hark back to Land Rover's early days. Then there's the sumptuous interior, which seems to get more posh with each passing year. The Range Rover is also the only SUV in its class with a long-wheelbase variant for VIP rear accommodations, yet it retains the go-anywhere capability that made its forebears famous around the globe. And when the available supercharged V8 is specified, this big SUV can put just about any other vehicle in its rearview right quick, sprinting to 60 mph in a bewilderingly brief 4.7 seconds.
You might be wondering how any rival could possibly measure up, and it's a question we've asked ourselves, too. Point-blank, if it's opulence you're after, the other SUVs in this segment are playing for second. Still, the Range Rover isn't for everyone. If you need three seating rows, for example, you'll need to look elsewhere, as the Range Rover seats five at the most. If you're considering a Range Rover with the base supercharged V6, know that it's far from the swiftest or most fuel-efficient option in this price range. Don't expect a pillow-soft ride, either: The Range Rover's enormous wheels may look great, but they end up transmitting some noticeable shock into the cabin when you're driving on poorly maintained streets.
Each of these weaknesses brings to mind a compelling competitor. The best three-row luxury SUV today is the 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL-Class, which provides adult-friendly space even in the way-back, along with a fuel-sipping diesel option and superb turbocharged gas engines. The 2015 Porsche Cayenne S boasts 420 horsepower to the Range Rover V6's 340, and it can be had at a considerable discount. There's also the 2015 Mercedes-Benz G-Class, Although it's fundamentally a repurposed military vehicle from the '70s, it has iconic styling and off-road skills of its own. But again, nothing puts it all together as well as the Range Rover.
Trim levels & features
The 2015 Land Rover Range Rover is a two-row luxury SUV available in five trim levels: base, HSE, Supercharged, Autobiography and Autobiography Black. A five-passenger layout is standard, with four-passenger seating optional on Autobiography and standard on Autobiography Black. The HSE, Supercharged and Autobiography are offered in both standard and long-wheelbase (LWB) variants, while the base Range Rover comes only with the standard wheelbase, and the Autobiography Black is LWB-only.
Note that the LWB models add 7.3 inches of rear legroom, power rear window sunshades, rear-door map pockets, an extended panoramic sunroof with rear-passenger sunblind control and minor aesthetic enhancements.
The base trim is equipped with 19-inch wheels (20s are optional), an adjustable air suspension, Terrain Response selectable four-wheel-drive modes, automatic xenon headlights, automatic wipers, front and rear parking sensors, a rearview camera, heated power-folding mirrors, a power liftgate and a power tailgate (clamshell-style cargo access) and keyless entry and ignition. Inside there's tri-zone automatic climate control, 10-way power front seats, heated front seats, driver memory functions, leather upholstery, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, a power-adjustable heated steering wheel and manually reclining rear seatbacks. Also standard are an 8-inch touchscreen, voice controls, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity and a 13-speaker Meridian audio system with iPod/USB connectivity and satellite and HD radio.
The HSE adds 20-inch alloy wheels, a panoramic sunroof, auto-dimming sideview mirrors, power-closing doors, upgraded leather upholstery, 14-way power front seats with ventilation and heated rear seats.
The Supercharged adds a supercharged V8 engine, 21-inch alloy wheels, foglights and an adaptive version of the Terrain Response system (Terrain Response 2).
A number of options are available on the base, HSE and Supercharged trims. For all three trims, the Vision Assist package adds adaptive headlights, ambient interior lighting, a surround-view camera system, a blind spot monitor and rear cross-traffic alert. It also includes Terrain Response 2 and foglights for the base and HSE trims and auto-dimming exterior mirrors for the base trim.
The Driver Assistance package builds on the Vision Assist package with a lane departure warning system, a self-parking system (with both perpendicular and parallel capability) and 360-degree parking sensors. Adaptive cruise control with automatic emergency braking is separately available. A premium 19-speaker Meridian stereo can be specified, and it comes bundled with InControl Apps (also offered as a stand-alone option).
The Tow package includes a tow hitch and a full-size spare tire, plus an active locking rear differential on the Supercharged trim. Additionally, there's a rear seat entertainment package with twin 8-inch screens (LWB models get 10.2-inch screens) that also adds front winged headrests. A heated wood and leather steering wheel is a stand-alone option.
The HSE and Supercharged are also eligible for 22-inch wheels and a Four Zone Climate Comfortpackage that includes quad-zone climate control, massaging front seats, a front cooler box, power-adjustable rear seats (recline and lumbar) with ventilation and the Intelligent Seat Cargo Mode system, which provides power-folding rear seatbacks that can sense an impending collision with the front seatbacks and temporarily slide the front seats out of the way to make room.
The Autobiography comes with most of the above features, adding or substituting 21-inch wheels, a variety of special exterior and interior color combinations, upgraded and extended leather trim, a suede-cloth headliner, 18-way-adjustable front seats with massage and memory functions (both sides), rear winged headrests and a 29-speaker Meridian surround-sound audio system.
Optional on the Autobiography is a Rear Executive Class Seating package that configures the rear seat for just two-passenger seating, but also adds additional power adjustments, massage and memory functions, a rear center console and a console storage box (optionally with cooling).
The LWB-only Autobiography Black adds various chrome and other exterior accents, perforated and extended leather trim, 20-way power front seats, the Rear Executive Class Seating package, power-folding rear tray tables (with leather or wood surfaces and integrated USB charging ports), rear footrests (with a passenger-side power calf rest) and a rear cooler box.
Both Autobiography trims are eligible for a number of 22-inch wheel designs and color-shifting paint, among other fashionable flourishes.
Performance & mpg
The 2015 Land Rover Range Rover base and HSE trims are powered by a supercharged 3.0-liter V6 engine rated at 340 hp and 332 pound-feet of torque. The other trims step up to a supercharged 5.0-liter V8 with a formidable 510 hp and 461 lb-ft of torque.
An eight-speed automatic transmission is standard either way, as is full-time four-wheel drive. The standard Terrain Response system provides five driver-selectable terrain modes with distinct powertrain, suspension and traction-control settings, while the optional Terrain Response 2 system adds an adaptive mode that senses surface conditions and adjusts the settings automatically. An active locking rear differential is optional on the Supercharged (via its enhanced Tow package) and standard on the two Autobiography trims.
Land Rover says the Range Rover V6 will hustle from zero to 60 mph in 7.1 seconds, which is on the slower side for a high-end luxury SUV. In Edmunds performance testing, the Range Rover V8 thundered to 60 mph in a remarkably quick 4.7 seconds.
The 2015 Land Rover Range Rover comes equipped with antilock brakes, traction and stability control (with rollover prevention and hill descent control), front seat side airbags, side curtain airbags and active front head restraints. Front and rear parking sensors and a rearview camera are also standard. The Vision Assist package adds a blind spot monitor, rear cross-traffic alert and a surround-view camera system, while the Driver Assistance package adds 360-degree parking sensors, a self-parking system and a lane departure warning system.
All models also feature Emergency Braking Assist, which uses forward-sensing radar and primes the brake system if a collision seems imminent. The available adaptive cruise control system adds full automatic braking capability (Intelligent Emergency Braking) in case the driver doesn't respond in time.
The 2015 Range Rover's entry-level supercharged V6 is a fine engine in its own right, but it's a little outmatched when faced with motivating the Range Rover's imposing mass. If your investment accounts are ready for a Range Rover, you might as well go all the way and get the supercharged V8. Initial response to your gas pedal inputs can be a bit abrupt, producing less than civilized lurches at times, but the 5.0-liter mill is undeniably strong. The even larger and heavier Range Rover LWB doesn't feel quite so spirited with the V8, but there's still more than enough power on tap for refined, elegant acceleration.
On the downside, the Range Rover doesn't exactly bristle with athleticism on winding roads, and the ride quality can be somewhat brittle over rough pavement. That's especially true if you opt for one of the larger wheel options; they go as high as 22 inches, and we feel even the Autobiography's standard 21s are pushing it. You'll find a bit more ride comfort in the LWB models, which do a better job of ironing out road imperfections. Either way, we suggest paying close attention to the steering during your test-drive -- although it's light and precise around town, we've found it gets somewhat heavy at highway speeds. Off-road, of course, the 2015 Range Rover is very capable, easily powering through challenging terrain that would stop most luxury SUVs in their tracks.
The Range Rover's cabin is as elegant as the penthouse suite at a chic hotel, with a half-industrial, half-posh vibe that's unlike anything else on the market. All materials are first-rate, with artfully stitched leather and gorgeous wood trim. The driver sits up high in front of a rich 12.3-inch digital instrument panel, with the center stack's 8-inch touchscreen close at hand for infotainment and other vehicle functions. For 2015, those functions optionally include InControl Apps, which integrates Apple and Android smartphones in such a way that certain apps (including iHeartRadio, Stitcher, Parkopedia and Glympse) look the same on the touchscreen as they do on your device.
Beneath the fairly straightforward central climate controls is Land Rover's trademark transmission selector dial, which rises dramatically out of the console when you start the vehicle. While you can't go wrong with any of the Meridian audio systems, we're partial to the 29-speaker version, mainly because we'd greatly enjoy telling our friends that we have 29 speakers parked in the driveway.
Rear seat headroom and legroom are certainly adequate in standard-wheelbase Range Rovers, but tall passengers may find the rear quarters a bit snug. That's where the long-wheelbase Range Rover comes in. With more than 7 inches of extra rear legroom and additional seatback recline, even NBA centers can relax and enjoy the ride. For the full effect, snag the Autobiography Black with its business-class twin rear seats and power-operated leather tray tables -- you know, in case you'd like someone to pass you the Grey Poupon.
Optionally leather-lined though it may be, the Range Rover's cargo area is rather modest for this segment, measuring 32.1 cubic feet with the rear seatbacks in place. Folding down the rear seatbacks opens up 71.7 cubic feet, which is decidedly unimpressive for such a large SUV. The LWB offers a moderately better 82.8 cubes. We do appreciate the clamshell-style rear hatch with its twin power-operated sections, and it's pretty neat how the Intelligent Seat Cargo Mode saves you from having to slide the front seats forward yourself before powering the rear seatbacks down.
Edmunds expert review process
This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.
We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.