Range Rover Sport 2014 Test Drive
Range Rover Sport 2014 Test Drive Photos and Stories.
Test Drive at Land Rover Marin of Marin Luxury Cars, 2013-10-26, Land Rover Marin of Marin Luxury Cars, Corte Madera, California, USA
Range Rover Sport 2014 Test Drive
We receive invites to do road tests on all sorts of cars, which we share with our readers of AllCarCentral.com Magazine, and I must say every opportunity is welcomed with special anticipation. The new cars are really amazing. Many are becoming habitats for humanity, and some are pushing speeds up to the limits of escape velocity.
My E-mail clicked on with a note from my good friend Paige Casamento at Land Rover Marin of Marin Luxury Cars in Corte Madera, California, announcing the 2014 Range Rover Sport saying it was "re-designed, athletic and luxurious".
I previously owned a Land Rover, bought it new back in around 1967. I wanted the short-wheelbase model with the headlights set inboard by the grill so I could place red 5-gallon gas cans at the front of the fenders, like one would see in the movies showing Land Rovers clawing their way across Africa in search of the "Lost Land". Mine came with the headlights out-board on the front of the fenders so I placed the spare cans at the backend.
The great thing about Land Rovers back then, for me, was the square ruggedness and the fact that they were made out of aluminum panels and galvanized steel plates. Manly stuff. Fast? No. Stiffly sprung? Yes.
I watched the Rover model I had loved move off into obscurity as the Range Rover came into being (mostly used by soccer moms), and as I had since gave up exploring the mountain and deserts of Utah, 4 wheel-drive off road vehicles faded in my interest, until the E-mail from Paige. "Re-designed, athletic and luxurious", Interesting! I had to see.
Land Rover Marin of Marin Luxury Cars, Corte Madera, California
Off to Marin Luxury Cars in Corte Madera where Paige introduced me to our well informed host, David Dupart, who would show us around the vehicle.
David informed us about the RANGE ROVER SPORT we were about to have ago at. He chose the LR-V8 Supercharged 5.0 Liter Engine with all the options, including the off-road package; list price starting around $80,000 without options.
LR-V8 Supercharged 5.0 Liter Engine; Manufacturer's estimates: - Power 510hp; - Torque 461 lb ft; - Maximum Speed mph 140 / 155; - Acceleration 0-60 mph in 5.0 seconds; - City Label Value 14 mpg; - Highway Label Value 19 mpg; - Combined Label Value 16 mpg;
RANGE ROVER SPORT SUPERCHARGED
The Off-Road Package helps one get to those hard to find parking spots
David insisted he do the dealers off-road obstacle challenge. I could not tell if that was because driving this was the most fun part of his day, or needing to prevent some fool from launching a 5,000 Lb. vehicle into the shinny Jaguar F Type setting out in the sun at the end of the ramp of the "climbing demonstration" area.
The traversing and climbing was rated at 45 degrees and the Sport would manage the downward decent on its own, modulating the speed with, again, foot off the pedal.
Once back on level ground David pointed out some of the features of the on-board computer. One that grabbed my attention was the 'parking-space-finder'. Select this feature as you drive along the crowed streets and the Sport would 'keep an eye out' for a parking space and position itself and park. I assume all this automated hands-off stuff is so that one can be texting your friend that The Sport has found a parking spot in front of the pub and you will be in as soon as the Sport parks itself.
The RANGE ROVER SPORT had an automatic transmission with a hill-holding feature that allowed one to take ones foot off the gas, and the car would say put on any steep section. Very useful in the wild hills of San Francisco just across the Bay.
2 points on the interior at the front. The front console is really a demanding bit of furniture housing the gear selector lever and panel with a medium size knob for selecting the drive characteristics to match the outside and road conditions. One option on this panel is to leave the choice up to the Sport itself. David said that the Sport will sense the surface of the road, like slippery ice and make the adjustments, like 4-wheel drive, and then go back to normal 2 wheel when the surface clears up.
There is even a possibility to have a cooler in stalled in this center island, However once in the front passenger seat, I found the console infringed upon my space a bit too much for my taste. Maybe being able to pull a cold drink out on a hot run across the Serengeti would change my mind about giving up a bit of space.
Behind the wheel, the fully electrical adjustable seats and adjustable-every-other-thing gives full access and view. The first generation Range Rover I once sat in gave me the feeling that the seating was unstable and I could actually fall out the door. The Sport's seats were sold and had good support. Even the rear passengers have a good look-out, as the rear seat is set up higher for better view out the front window. The transmission is set for fully auto or into a slot for on demand shifting via the steering wheel paddles, just like Formula One racecars.
Yes these things are computers now.
David wanted to have one last go at the Sport before he turned it over to me. Moving the 5,000 Lb. Sport, with 4 people inside, out of the parking lot David stepped down hard on the right peddle. Head Rush! This 4 door, 4 wheel drive off-road capable vehicle will do 0 to 60 MPH in just 5.0 sec. My little '05 Porsche 911 Carrera S will only beat that time by just .20 second faster. Impressive! David explained that the new Sport was an all aluminum monocoque constructed vehicle getting away form the previous truck like construction of the first generation of Land Rovers.
The Sport, in spite of its size moves quickly and is light on its feet. A very good response to all inputs. Little dive, dip or yaw at any maneuver. Simply elegant in its manners. Ingress, seating and controls all easily available. Except it is a tall vehicle and the floor height is a step up to gain access.
The wonderfully enthusiastic Paige Casamento of Marin Luxury Cars in Corte Madera, California