At first glance, it may take the shrewd eye of a Land Rover aficionado to notice the difference between the new Range Rover Evoque luxury crossover and its predecessor (which debuted 2010), but every body panel is changed and only the door hinges are a body carryover, said Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) Executive Director of Product Engineering, Nick Rogers, adding: “Underneath the skin is an engineering and technical revolution.”
This ranges from a 3-cylinder hybrid-electric powertrain and new chassis architecture to “world first” Ground View technology, which transmits a combined view from grille- and exterior mirror-mounted cameras to an instrument-panel touchscreen (top Evoque models get three screens) showing a 180o view under the immediate front of the vehicle, particularly useful for technically challenging off-road situations. Cameras also face the rear, sending images to the regular interior mirror when vision through the tailgate glass is obscured. The driver selects the wide-angle camera view.
Built for electrification
The Evoque’s new Premium Transverse Architecture (PTA) platform—to be used on other forthcoming JLR models, but it’s not aluminum-intensive—has been developed to embrace increasing levels of drivetrain electrification without battery packaging impinging on cabin space.
This electrification begins at launch with the new Evoque being available with a 48-volt mild-hybrid system (fitted to all but the 2WD entry-level version) to provide more linear torque delivery at low revs before the engine’s turbocharger spools up. Electric motors are synchronous-reluctance for the lower-powered Evoques, synchronous claw for the most powerful. Stored energy is available on step-off to provide added torque—typically 20-30 N•m (15-22 lb•ft), though capability is much higher—to the ICE, which shuts off at speeds less than 17 km/h (11 mph). The hybrid should reduce fuel consumption by a maximum of 6%, the company said.
The mild hybrid with engine-mounted belt-integrated starter-generator provides energy to a battery mounted under the floor to avoid impacting cabin space or wading depth, which now is 600 mm (23.6 in).
Within 12 months, a 3-cylinder PHEV variant of the new Evoque will be on sale, its much-larger battery tucked into the PTA framework. Details are yet to come, but the 3-cyl. will be a member of JLR’s Ingenium family. Power output gradations of the 2.0-L 4-cylinder launch engines are: 110 kW (147 hp), 132 kW (177 hp) and 177 kW (237 hp) for the diesels and 147 kW (197 hp), 183 kW (245 hp) and 221 kW (296 hp) for the gasoline 4-cylinder engines. Except for the base model, all have 9-speed automatic gearboxes. The new Active Driveline incorporates a rear-mounted double clutch to provide torque vectoring to the rear axle.
At 4.37 m (172 in), the new crossover is fractionally shorter—despite a slightly longer wheelbase—thanks to shorter overhangs. Rear-seat space is improved, as is cargo capacity. The bodyshell is stiffer, complemented by the PTA to provide smoother, quieter running. Styling includes ultra-slim matrix LED headlights and flush door handles, contributing to a Cd improved by a maximum 14%.Continue reading »