2018 Land Rover Range Rover Velar Review — Cars.com


for 2018 Land Rover adds another room to
its ladder with the all-new Range Rover Velar. Now the Land Rover lineup is six
suvs deep and that’s a little confusing there are a lot of SUVs some of them are
priced near identically including the same price as the valar but this has a
place in the Land Rover lineup and first you can start just by looking at it it’s
a stunning SUV to look at but there’s a lot more the Land Rover Discovery sport
is kind of a goofy looking SUV and the Evoque is more like a toy than an actual
SUV the Range Rover Velar just has a commanding presence it’s something when
you look out the Cars.com office windows on the 10th floor down at the
parking garage this thing just stands out like am on the parking garage roof
surrounded by a bunch of other basic commuting vehicles I think what helps
the valar is this byron blue exterior and the blackout package it has the
blackened grille and inserts on the side of the car and then on the hood you have
these black and inserts that say Range Rover more black pieces along the side
black mirrors and all of that combined with this very aggressive shape creates
a very good-looking SUV the nose is long the windshield is significantly raked
back and the roofline has this plummeting angle to it the car looks
more like a cockpit of a fighter jet than an SUV and it really stands out on
the road one thing that gives us concern however are these door handles they’re
pretty cool they’re flush and when you unlock them they pop out but this is a
land rover a brand not known for the greatest reliability and that gives us a
little hesitation they also don’t pop out automatically like a Tesla would so
you unlock the car with the key fob and they pop out when you lock the car they
pop back in that wow effect on the floors exterior
is also apparent on the inside and especially on this car with the optional
Windsor leather the seats are leather but that also carries over to the
dashboard in the door panels which isn’t very common there’s a lot of automakers
out there who will cheap out on the dashboard and the door panels with a
leatherette or full leather surface not the valar though and it’s apparent when
you open the door and you get this rich aroma of leather it’s kind of like
taking the top off of a nice pair of leather dress shoes you open the top and
you just get this very nice aroma of classiness
well maybe in someone else’s closet definitely not mine the valar debuts a
new dual screen multimedia and control system for land rover when I first heard
dual screen I instantly think just failure dual screens have not been
executed very well in the past most notably with Acura but the Land Rover
system is done very well surprisingly well in fact it’s responsive the
controls are laid out where you want them and there are also physical
controls here so you have a volume knob and then the dual purpose climate dials
in one setting you control the warm and cool of the climate system you press it
in and it gives you the heated or cooled functions of the seats most notably
though it works when you first start up the car a lot of these touch screens you
start the car up and there’s a loading process or it’s just slow and it
hesitates this is not one of those systems and it’s refreshing especially
after just driving the all-new 2018 Volvo xc60 which had a lot of the screen
lag and delay problems that we experienced in our long-term xc90 test
car this seems to solve that kind of annoyance that we’ve experienced in
other cars while still being very usable I exclusively use the bottom touch
screen during my driving it has all the controls you really need
and I found it more responsive and prettier to look at than the top screen
not well driving though what you can do with this touchscreen is you have
climate controls for automatic climate control or on and off or sinking the
dual climate and then you have the seat functions as well and on this car
massaging seats done very nicely the vehicle controls give you various
driving modes and then you have your vehicle settings in here too the system
is very quick and I really like using it what’s most disappointing about the
valar is that this one has the diesel engine I know you may be thinking Oh
diesel yes torque but this 180 horsepower
4-cylinder with 317 pounds of torque is kind of an unimpressive engine in this
car it has non linear power delivery power comes and goes it feels splotchy
and then the transmission is just slow to shift it doesn’t give you that crisp
driving experience even in the sport and dynamic modes it’s like here’s this
wonderful luxury SUV and we’re gonna put an economy car engine in it I just don’t
like it it doesn’t drive luxurious but it does drive efficiently over my time
in the car I got an average 33 miles per gallon which is above the highway rated
30 miles per gallon and that was a mix of highway and city driving I averaged
about 40 miles an hour the valar is just a few dollars less expensive than the
Land Rover Discovery and the discovery has a roomier second row at an optional
third row which makes it a more family-friendly SUV the valar however is
more about making a statement and it does exactly that
our recommendation though skip the diesel engine just goes straight to the
supercharged v6 you