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07 Aug 2017 | Text by Julian Kho, Photos by Manufacturer. Direct from Molde, Norway

The Range Rover Velar is the fourth and latest model to join the Rangie family and it's undoubtedly the coolest car Land Rover has ever produced. Here's why...


Since the day the Land Rover Defender was born in 1948, being an icon has never been one of Land Rover's concerns. The English carmaker is already in its own impeccable way iconic, producing cars that can do anything and go anywhere - a hallmark that is known only to this very brand.

The range of cars Land Rover has produced over the last couple of years - from the Range Rover Sport and the Range Rover Evoque to the Land Rover Discovery and the Land Rover Discovery Sport - all bear the carmaker's awe-inspiring aforementioned hallmark, which has allowed the fourth and latest Range Rover model to inevitably inherit.

Created to fill the gap between the Evoque and the Sport, the Range Rover Velar is a mid-size Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV) that's clearly the coolest Rangie ever produced by the carmaker, which we found out during our long and extensive on and off-road drive in Norway.

1. The smoking-hot good looks

There are good-looking SUVs and then there are exceptional-looking SUVs. The Velar is clearly the latter.

From the unbroken waistline that stretches from tail to tail and floating roofline to flush deployable door handles and slim Matrix Laser-LED headlamps, the design of the car is purity and minimalistic at its very best.

Interestingly, unlike most cars, the Velar didn't experience a significant change from its concept. Thus, it retains its elegant simplicity and a visually reductive approach.


2. High-tech Cabin

As with all Range Rovers, the Velar's cabin is nothing short of luxurious. But where it sets itself apart as the coolest Rangie in the lineup is the way it manages to seamlessly integrate an advanced technology like the Touch Pro Duo in its cabin that matches form and function.

Located at eye and knee level respectively, the two high-definition 10-inch touchscreens efficiently declutter the cabin of buttons and controls. More impressively, you can set the upper screen to tilt forward automatically by up to 30 degrees when you start the car, which means it'll be a perfect fit for drivers of all heights.


3. It'll survive the wildest terrains

Cars can be like blondes. Underneath all the right looks and hot bods lay a living hell of a woman who is nothing but an empty shell. Not the Velar. Not only is it very appealing to the eye, the sizeable SUV is very capable on off-road grounds.

Refined for every occasion and for every terrain, the Velar uses unique sustainable materials and advanced engineering that enables the car to go anywhere and do anything.

During the media drive in Norway, the car could hold its own on grounds that are wild and as steep as 40 degrees and will wade in depths of up to 650mm!


4. The petrol engines are sweet

The Velar will arrive end of this year with both the 2.0-litre and 3.0-litre petrol variants. The former will produce 250bhp and 365Nm of twisting force from the word go and will hit the 100km/h mark in just 6.7 seconds. For a car weighing two tonnes, it's nothing short of respectable.

The 3.0-litre V6 Supercharged petrol engine, on the other hand, has a different proposition. It is clearly the one to go for, thanks to its highly powerful unit that dishes out 380bhp and 450Nm of torque. Power is sent to all four wheels via a ZF eight-speed autobox, allowing it to complete the century sprint in 5.7 seconds.


5. It's the Rolls-Royce of SUVs

Its biggest sibling, the Land Rover Range Rover 5.0 Vogue SE Supercharged, was undoubtedly one of the coolest and luxurious SUVs you could buy, in our opinion. But with a more compact size that doesn't compromise on driveability and functionality, the Velar has since superseded that.

The Velar, with its big set of 22-inch wheels and a substantial weight of two tonnes, impresses with its opulent ride and excellent cabin insulation. Even during short bursts of up to three-digit speeds, external noises are kept well at bay. More remarkably, it soaks up broken tarmac like water to sponge, which makes it that much more comfortable even when tackling wild terrains.


6. The name

The origin of the Velar name dates back to the first Range Rover prototypes of the 1960s. When development engineers needed to hide the true identity of 'secret' pre-production Range Rovers, they chose the name Velar, derived from the Latin velaris - meaning to veil or hide.

The Velar is one of the most advanced and innovative SUVs ever built by the English carmaker, but it's clear that the name comes from a much simpler and predictable time. And nothing can be more meaningful and cooler than this.
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