2018 Land Rover Range Rover

2018 Land Rover Range Rover SV Autobiography Dynamic Review

When you need luxury to go absolutely anywhere, there's the Land Rover Range Rover.
author
by Will Kaufman
Edmunds Editor

Edmunds expert review

What's big, powerful, luxurious, capable, high-tech and has a price range that starts with "sticker shock" and ends in "VH1 Behind the Music spending habits"? That would be the 2018 Land Rover Range Rover. It's a go-anywhere SUV luxury that can be specced to meet the most demanding standards.

Luxury and capability are the two big watchwords for the Range Rover. The interior will swaddle you in leather, wood and high-resolution displays. Meanwhile, a host of available off-road upgrades — including a trick traction control system — means this SUV can tackle terrain most drivers prefer to enjoy from the safety of a scenic overlook. There are a few weaknesses, such as a lackluster base engine and oversize wheels that don't help the ride quality, but considering all the vehicle's strengths it's easy to understand the cachet the Range Rover has earned.

In some ways, the Range Rover is in a class of one, but there are competitors worth considering. The Mercedes-Benz GLS offers a similarly potent combination of luxury and performance, though not the same level of off-road capability. The Lexus LX 570, meanwhile, is capable off-road but comes up short in on-road comfort. Of course, if you're looking at the top-tier Range Rover SVAutobiography Long Wheelbase, you might also consider the Bentley Bentayga.

Yet part of the Range Rover's enduring appeal is its ability to be anything from a school taxi to a limousine that can crawl a respectable distance up Mount Kilimanjaro to something that can embarrass some sports cars in a straight line. It all depends on how deep your pockets are.



What's new for 2018

For 2018, a number of minor design tweaks have been made to the exterior and interior. Most notably the interior ditches a lot of knobs and buttons in favor of a second touchscreen. New, top-of-the-line seats are available, and the SVAutobiography Dynamic trim gets a slight bump in horsepower.

We recommend

Depending on your needs, we think either the HSE Td6 or Supercharged are the best starting points. The HSE with the diesel engine (Td6) provides plenty of low-end power and better fuel efficiency, while the Supercharged's supercharged V8 really wakes up the big SUV on the road. These trim levels add a lot of features luxury buyers expect and open up more options. Consider the Driver Pro package for blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise and the 360-degree camera. If off-roading is in your future, the Terrain Response 2 system is an inexpensive add-on that pays big dividends.



Trim levels & features

The 2018 Land Rover Range Rover comes in five main versions: base, HSE, Supercharged, Autobiography and SVAutobiography Dynamic. While the base Range Rover comes well-equipped, the HSE gives you more standard features. The Supercharged is similarly equipped but has a supercharged V8. Next, the Autobiography adds more luxury options and driver assist systems, and the SVAutobiography Dynamic adds more power and sportier suspension tuning. The long-wheelbase versions of the Supercharged and Autobiography add more than 7 inches of rear legroom.

The Range Rover's base version comes with your choice of a supercharged 3.0-liter V6 (340 horsepower, 332 pound-feet of torque) or the Td6 version that has a turbocharged, diesel-powered 3.0-liter V6 (254 hp, 443 lb-ft). An eight-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive are standard.

Unlike other variants, there is no optional upgraded seat package, and a panoramic roof is only available as an option in this standard trim. Even still, LED headlights, front and rear parking sensors, three-zone climate control, and a 13-speaker Meridian sound system are standard. So is Land Rover's InControl Touch Pro Duo infotainment system with a 10.2-inch infotainment touchscreen and a second touchscreen to handle other cabin controls such as climate and seating adjustment.

Plus, many options are available to get your base Range Rover equipped nicely, including active safety features and driver aids, an upgraded stereo, a rear-seat entertainment package with two 8-inch screens, and a towing package.

Next up is the Range Rover HSE that includes a few more standard features such as 20-inch wheels, a power liftgate, soft-close doors, upgraded 20-way power-adjustable front seats, and access to a greater catalog of options. You can get the HSE with either the Td6 diesel V6 from the standard model or a powered-up version of the turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 (380 hp, 332 lb-ft).

Next is the Range Rover Supercharged, which is powered by a supercharged 5.0-liter V8 (518 hp, 461 lb-ft). The Supercharged variant comes with 21-inch wheels, a more capable Terrain Response 2 system and All-Terrain Progress Control, which is basically the off-road version of cruise control. These off-road systems are available as optional extras on the lower trim levels.

The next rung up is the Range Rover Autobiography. The Autobiography packs the same supercharged V8 as the Supercharged, and it features significantly more content, such as a surround-view camera system, a 29-speaker Meridian sound system, 24-way power-adjustable heated and ventilated front seats, and heated and ventilated rear seats with remote power-folding. It also includes a gesture-operated sunblind for the panoramic sunroof and standard driver assist systems such as blind-spot monitoring and lane departure intervention.

If you want the sportiest Range Rover, go with the Range Rover SVAutobiography Dynamic. It uses an uprated version of the 5.0-liter supercharged V8 gasoline engine and produces 557 hp and 502 lb-ft of torque. The Dynamic variant also features a lowered ride height and a more aggressive on-road suspension calibration.

The long-wheelbase models all share the same extended chassis. The Range Rover's wheelbase is lengthened by 7.8 inches, and rear-seat legroom grows by slightly more than 7 inches. Otherwise, they feature similar setups as their short-wheelbase twins. As the top dog, the SVAutobiography LWB comes with reclining executive-class seats, which includes deployable tables, a center console cooler with glasses, and a rear-seat entertainment system.



Trim tested

Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions that are fundamentally similar. The ratings in this review are based on our road test of the 2016 Land Rover Range Rover HSE TD6 (turbo 3.0L V6 diesel | 8-speed automatic | AWD).

NOTE: Since this test was conducted, the current 2018 Land Rover Range Rover has received some revisions, including a revised InControl Touch Pro Duo navigation and entertainment system and the new Terrain Response 2, an automated driving mode system. Our findings, however, remain broadly applicable to this year's Range Rover.

Driving

The Range Rover HSE delivers exactly what you'd expect — a quiet and mostly soft ride in a handsome but conservative package that offers ample passenger and cargo space. We tested the torquey and smooth diesel engine, but the supercharged V8 is great, too.

Acceleration

The diesel V6 generates a healthy serving of torque and enough power to get this 5,492-pound Range Rover moving fairly effortlessly. It will accelerate to 60 mph in 7.7 seconds, a respectably quick figure for such a boxy beast.

Braking

The pedal travel is a bit long, but that's not a bad trait in an off-roader. More to the point, these brakes are effective and can reliably execute a panic stop from 60 mph in just 117 feet. This comes with abundant nosedive, but it stays arrow-straight.

Steering

The Range Rover feels secure when cruising down the road and making small course corrections. The steering ratio is neither too slow nor too quick. A tidy U-turn radius makes for good parking maneuverability.

Handling

You'll feel all of the the Range Rover's weight going around turns. It begrudgingly responds to commands. This one does not like to be hustled through twisty bits, but it does feel coordinated in its own stately way.

Drivability

The gas pedal's accurate calibration makes for smooth starts, and the eight-speed transmission always responds as expected when it's time to accelerate. The engine stop-start system reacts quickly enough that we never felt the need to disable it.

Off-road

Low-range gearing, impressive suspension articulation, generous body clearance, and multiple terrain maps give the Range Rover off-road capability its buyers may never fully use. It is deceptively wide, though.

Comfort

The Range Rover is a quiet SUV, even when equipped with the diesel engine. There's a definite luxury slant to its ride character, but it could be better at filtering out sharp edges. The seats are firmer than we'd like.

Seat comfort

The well-sculpted seats offer good support but can feel firm if your shape doesn't match. Many adjustments make that unlikely, but we'd prefer more padding. The fold-down front armrests are adjustable but are also firm and narrow.

Ride comfort

The Range Rover has an odd combination of long-travel suspension softness that you'll notice when driving over bumps and a sensitivity to road surface coarseness, particularly on concrete and cracked asphalt. It's like a Buick with overinflated tires.

Noise & vibration

We'd describe this one as silent even if it wasn't a boxy SUV. There's not much road or wind noise. Some diesel noise is apparent at parking speeds, but it's admirably muted and melds into the background as speed picks up.

Interior

The Range Rover feels big inside, and once you climb aboard it offers a good view outside. Most controls are easy to use, but the audio and entertainment system interface isn't terribly convenient. The generous cargo hold benefits from a split two-piece hatch with a short tailgate.

Ease of use

Driving position is nicely adjustable, and the major controls are, for the most part, logically placed. A lack of control knobs is annoying, though.

Getting in/getting out

The air suspension lowers the vehicle when parked to reduce step-in and cargo-loading height. The doors open wide, but there are no pillar-mounted grab handles to grasp.

Roominess

The Range Rover offers ample head- and legroom and shoulder room. It's a generally airy feeling front and back. Note: Despite outward appearances, the Range Rover only seats five; there is no third-row option.

Visibility

The beltline is low and there's lots of glass, with a high seating position that helps the driver see down past the corners. The optional multiview camera system helps in tight quarters, and there are parking sensors front and rear.

Quality

The Range Rover HSE looks well-built inside and out, but the interior materials in particular look a bit plain and overly conservative. It's more an issue of style than quality, we suppose, but those two often go hand in hand.

Utility

The Range Rover's interior is large but follows the European design edict that states the inside of the car should be meant only for driving. Thus, it lacks many of the small storage spaces that owners of American and Asian SUVs may be used to.

Small-item storage

For such a big car, the door pockets are small and there's virtually no cubby space. All your daily knickknacks will have to fit in the glovebox and console. At least those are decently sized.

Cargo space

The cargo hold is large, and the two-piece tailgate makes it easy to cram it full because the lower half acts as a fence when the hatch is open. The back seat doesn't come close to folding flat, though, and it can't fold at all on long-wheelbase models.

Towing

Immense diesel torque is perfect for towing, and the air suspension is adept at supporting trailer tongue weight. The Range Rover comes well prepared to tow right up to its 7,716-pound towing limit.

Technology

Land Rover's new Touch-Pro Duo system certainly looks amazing. However, in our limited experience with it in other Land Rovers, we've found it can be a bit laggy and at times unresponsive. While the infotainment system has tons of features, it can also be overly complicated and frustrating to use.

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.